Former Makerere University Vic e Chancellor Prof Venansius Baryamureeba has asked students at the country’s leading education institution to intensify innovation in science and technology, saying that only then will they become billionaires, and transform the country and the continent.
Baryamureeba was last Saturday speaking as chief guest, at the closing of the Bachelors of Science in Software engineering program at Makerere University. He told the students that they held the keys for the country and Africa’s entry into the first world.
“Currently, most of the world’s richest people are those that have taken advantage of innovation in Science and Technology,” said the professor.
“Looking at the stories of Microsoft’s Bill Gates, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, 24 year old Evan Spiegel, co-founder of photo- messaging app Snapchat, 31 year old Elizabeth Holmes, who runs blood-testing firm Theranos and many more, I know one thing for sure: Africa has equally brilliant youths and what we need is a comprehensive and coherent strategy to guide them to new frontiers for them to surpass the records already broken! This is the only way Africa can leapfrog and join the developed nations.”
Baryamureeba, who quit Makerere to start his own UTAMU University a couple of years ago, said that while African youths had shown development especially in the field of sports, this area would produce numerous billionaires.
He noted that sports’ contribution to economic development is and will remain minimal and thus much attention should be trained on developing innovation in science and technology.
He added, “In the whole world it’s only Michael Jordan among the sports men and ladies who has ever made it to the billionaires list. But I am not saying that we should abandon sports. This message is aimed at youth that want to become billionaires (in dollars).”
He went on to enlist a number of tools that the youths ought to tap in such as Facebook, Linked-In, Twitter, WhatsApp, software, email, Skype, phones, tabs, computers, all of which would help create opportunities, share knowledge with others, create jobs, boost their income, build businesses that last and change the country.
“When appropriately deployed, Information Technology can support organizations in achieving their competitive leverage, market position, quality services and efficient operations.”