• Michieka said on Friday it is important for the government to invest in such infrastructure in universities.
• Prof Nyariki said the facility is going to improve the status of the institution, in training students and carrying out research for post-graduate students and researchers.
An analytical and imaging laboratory has been launched at Murang’a University of Technology to help in research and learning.
National Research Fund board of trustees’ chairman Prof Ratemo Michieka said on Friday it is important for the government to invest in such infrastructure in universities. He spoke while launching the facility.
Prof Michieka said the lab will raise the status of the university as a research institution, adding that it is the first big project of its kind funded by the government.
The NRF chairman said the laboratory is a modern facility that can be used in identifying and solving problems such as detecting various poisons and pollutants in water and soils to enable appropriate action.
“This equipment should enable us to identify and solve various problems facing different sectors such as agriculture, pharmaceuticals and even construction by analysing various products and ensuring quality is upheld,” he said.
The former Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology vice chancellor said the laboratory is open to all local universities and welcomed collaborations from the East African Community and beyond.
“This laboratory, having been funded by the Kenyan government, is open to other institutions of research, especially universities that are training young people to analyse materials that were previously being taken out to other countries,” Michieka said.
“The government is proud of the steps that Murang’a University of Technology has taken towards the advancement of science and technology in this country.”
Prof Michieka underscored the importance of delivering results from such big investments and urged the university’s vice chancellor Prof Dickson Nyariki to ensure that the equipment is kept in working condition and is well maintained at all times.
The lab, worth more than Sh50 million was constructed majorly using a grant of about Sh46 million from the NRF in 2017.
Prof Nyariki said the facility is going to improve the status of the institution, in training students and carrying out research for post-graduate students and researchers from outside the university.
It will also be useful to the community in terms of soil and water quality analysis.
The VC said the laboratory has the potential to be an income generating facility where interested persons who have materials they need analysed can use the lab for a fee.