While appearing before the Senatorial Standing Committee on Social Affairs, Human Rights and Petitions yesterday, RAB Director General, Dr Mark Cyubahiro Bagabe said, the board currently has insufficient budget for research.
“No budget can solve the problems 100% but as Heads of State wish, if we allocate 1% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) to research, we will change things, though this is an international suggestion that cannot be easily applied,” he said.
“For RAB, if the budget was raised from Rwf5 billion to Rwf30 billion, there are things that would bring immediate impacts. I know there are different priorities like health and infrastructure but I wish that we get 1% of GDP,” he explained.
However, Bagabe said there is a good step that has been made where research budget was increased from Rwf1 billion in 2015 to Rwf5 billion currently with Rwf4.7 billion coming from the national budget and the rest from donors.
Bagabe said that RAB has stepped towards seeds multiplication after observing that the existing ones do not resist the climate change.
He said many seedlings are imported and sometimes come with pests.
Senators urged RAB to consider the research which brings impact on people’s welfare.