DAR-ES-SALAAM– Institutions of higher learning in Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda and Tanzania are among 10 universities in Africa which have been selected to host African Centres of Excellence which are earmarked for future outstanding academic outputs.

The centres of excellence would also produce materials which can be sources of income, according to a working paper from Professor Jude Ssebuwufu of Uganda Martyrs University on the “Role of Centres of Excellence: Initiatives in Industrialisation”, presented at the 6th Forum on Academia, Public Private Partnership for East Africa held in Nairobi recently.

The selection was based on proposals whose focus was aimed at addressing specific development objectives.

The Centres of Excellence are meant to deal with development goals mapped out within different sectors, including Health; Education; Industry; Agriculture; Oil and Gas explorations; Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM)’ Information Communication Technology (ICT); and Applied Statistics, Prof Ssebuwufu revealed.

The African Centres of Excellence (ACEs) will play roles in developing high quality curricula; enrollment of more than 3,500 graduate students in the regional development priority areas to ensure that more than 700 of the students will be PhDs holders.

More than 1,000 would be female students and the institutions would ensure the publication of more than 1,500 research articles in high impact journals. Between them, the ACEs would also launch some 300 partnerships with the productive sector, research institutions and civil society to harness real development and generate more than 30 million US dollars in external revenue.

Centres of excellence in East Africa include the Jaramogi Oginga Odinga University of Science and Technology in Bondo, Kenya, which deals with Sustainable Use of Insects as Food and Feeds; and the University of Rwanda’s College of Education, which hosts the Centre of Excellence in the “Internet of Things.”

Others are the Arusha, Tanzania-based Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology which hosts the Water Infrastructure and Sustainable Energy Centre for the Future; and Uganda Martyrs University, which has the African Centre for Agro-Ecology and Livelihood Systems. Also in Uganda the Makerere University is hosting the Centre of Materials, Product Development and Nanotechnology as well as the Centre for Crop Improvement and the Mbarara University of Science and Technology handling Pharm- Biotechnology and Traditional Medicine Centre.

Ethiopia has the African Railway Education and Research Institute at Addis Ababa University; while Malawi has the African Centre of Excellence for Aquaculture and Fisheries Science at the Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources.

Mozambique runs the Centre of Studies in Oil and Gas Engineering and Technology at the Universidad Eduardo Mondlane, while Zambia’s Copperbelt University has the Africa Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Mining.