The IP that submitted the form102.116.16.84
Form number on the system260
User accountAmeenah Gurib-Fakim
Other Entries
Date CreatedNovember 26, 2021
Date UpdatedNovember 26, 2021
Nominator NameAmeenah Gurib-Fakim
Nominator EmailEmail hidden; Javascript is required.
Nominator Gender
  • Female
Category of nomination qualificationA member of government and/or current or former Head of State
Nominator Phone+230 5940 2020
Nominator OrganizationOffice of the Former President of the Republic of Mauritius
Nominee NameAdipala Ekwamu
Nominee EmailEmail hidden; Javascript is required.
Nominee Gender
  • Male
Nominee Phone+256772601875
Nominee OrganizationRegional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM)
Nominee Achievement Brief

Vision statement
Catalysing development change in Africa and globally by building capacity of African people and its institutions to positively contribute to change prosperity. This Vision of success is fulfilled through strategic engagement and leadership in higher education and research sector of Africa. Prof. Adipala has mostly championed these over the last 35 years through Universities, their students, governments, regional and global partnerships. Prof. Adipala has provided leadership together with other partners to shape Pan-African vision of building human capital for transformation of agricultural sector especially moving a mass of smallholder farmers out of poverty. Below are five key areas of contribution made by Prof. Adipala:

Contributions to reducing poverty and hunger and for improving food and nutrition security
Prof. Adipala’s influence on reducing poverty and hunger through improving food and nutrition security has impacted over 40 million African lives. Prof. Adipala has led cutting edge research leading to release of two cowpea varieties (MU93 series), a famine crop in the drylands of Uganda. This was a break through, for the first time since the 1960s, his research team had released cowpea varieties. Cowpeas remains an important source of food and nutrition for 69,644 households (approximately 417,864 persons) in Uganda. Further, his research interest continued with work in soya bean leading to a release of Soybean variety (MAKSOY 1) and NAMSOY. Research on Soybean was further extended at Makerere University by other senior and junior researchers led by Prof. Tukamuhabwa (after Prof. Adipala took a full time position at RUFORUM as Executive Secretary) with initial funding support from RUFORUM provided by Prof. Adipala. Today, elite varieties have expanded to Maksoy 2N, Maksoy 3N, Maksoy 4N, Maksoy 5N, Namsoy 4M and MAKSO6 and these varieties have been recommended Ministry of Agriculture Animal Industry and Fisheries as high yielding, early maturing and disease resistant. Through this effort, Soya bean today contributes an estimated US$45 million to the GDP of Uganda with a 288% increase in export value of soya bean. Today 66,718 smallholder farmers engaged in Soya bean production today have an opportunity to earn UGX 1,185,600 (US$520) per hectare per season (compared to an estimate of US$131 per hectare earned by smallholder maize farmers).

Prof. Adipala has been relentless in research. He focused his research’s team attention to addressing sorghum production challenges. Through this effort together with his students now colleagues (Dr. Patrick Okori, Dr. Thomas Odong, Dr. Moses Biruma), they released sorghum varieties (NM09006, NM09010, NM09022, NM09017, NM09020, NM09037, NM09012, NM09004, MUK60 & MUK154) for the dryland areas of Uganda. These sorghum varieties have stabilized the food security of over 606,266 households (3.65 million) Ugandans in eastern and northern Uganda. Further, the students he worked with under this research programme have today become leading researchers leading global programmes. For example, Dr. Patrick Okori, is now championing ICRISAT’s sorghum breeding agenda in Malawi with a recent release of three sorghum varieties (Pilira Three, Pilira Four and Pilira Five) in Malawi; this advancing Africa’s food security agenda. Besides being a food staple, sorghum has become an important income security crop produced mainly for the beer industry through contract farming. Smallholder farmers that have adopted contract farming of the sorghum varieties have life transformational stories of success and hope to share with the rest of the world.

Prof. Adipala has been instrumental in reviving cassava production in Uganda. In the early 1990s when cassava mosaic disease had ravaged cassava in Uganda, Prof. Adipala was part of the team that were active in ground breaking research to tackle the challenge. He continued supporting the cassava research initiatives through capacity building of cassava breeders in Uganda and in particular at Makerere University and Namulonge Research Institute. Today, 60% (2,367,600 agricultural households) of Ugandan smallholder farmers produce cassava and estimated 90% (approximately 39 million) of Ugandans consume cassava in one form or the other. Prof. Adipala’s focused attention on leading research and building human capacity has been instrumental currency that has allowed for continued success of the cassava breeding programmes led at Namulonge for example by Dr. Robert Kawuki; an illustrious RUFORUM alumni that has continued to mobilise funding to expand the breeding programme.
Prof. Adipala is further championing extension and advancement of cassava and potato production efforts in Kenya with three research teams based at University of Nairobi and Egerton University. These projects are supporting innovations to deliver clean planting materials building on the successful community seed delivery models in Uganda implemented by Makerere University under the Community Action Research Programme funded by RUFORUM. Through this effort, there are 11,000 smallholder household beneficiaries of the clean planting materials for cassava and potato. Technical Agricultural Colleges such as Baraka Agricultural College have now been placed on a National map as critical allies in the delivery of clean potato planting materials as the institution is now certified by Kenya and the Kenya National Potato Council of Kenya as producers of clean potato seed. Earlier, Prof. Adipala through RUFORUM had made an intervention in Kenya with several research teams at University of Eldoret, Kenyatta University, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, University of Nairobi, and Moi University. Taken altogether, these research efforts and output of technologies and innovations benefited an estimated 350,000 smallholder farmers in Kenya.
Additional research projects are currently running across Africa, contributing to requisite technology, innovations and management practices delivery that are critical in poverty reduction and catalysing food and nutrition security across the continent. These in total are benefiting an estimated 320,000 smallholder farmer households in different African countries. For example, Wheat-Ethiopia, Cassava-Uganda with various success, Fish in Malawi, and Dairy in Tanzania, Baobab (Benin), Pineapple
(Ghana), Sheep and wool (South Africa), encroacher bushes management (Namibia), Safflower (Botswana), famine crops, apiary production, vegetables, and natural resources management (Sudan). These projects are delivering important research and technologies to the benefit of thousands of smallholder farmers in respective countries. Altogether, in the last 15 years, Prof. Adipala has supported research effort of 520 research teams impacting lives in terms of income, food and nutrition security of close to 40 million persons within Africa.

Contributions to increased economic opportunity including income and employment in Africa
Prof. Adipala has served as an enabler of expanded economic opportunities for smallholder farmers, individuals, and students across Africa. He has worked with several smallholder farmer communities and groups to catalyse their capacity to transition to financially viable groups and persons. During post conflict reconstruction in eastern Uganda, Prof. Adipala met with a group of 12 women farmers in early 1990s. By then the group was a loose coalition of women struggling to feed their families, access agricultural inputs and support one another in post-conflict trauma. Together with his students (later became colleagues) they worked to transform this group into a farmer cooperative of 15,000 smallholder farmers. Today, this farmer cooperative boosts of economic empowerment of its members; they are able to produce a diversity of agricultural crops; cassava, oil seeds and cereals that are transformed into diverse products; such as cooking oil, high value grade cassava flour, and breads and also provides added services to the wider community such as tractor hire services. Further, P’KWI has been able to attract additional partners beyond the initial efforts of Prof. Adipala at Makerere University and RUFORUM to include McKnight Foundation among others; these have continued to help with the growth of the Cooperative’s vision.
Prof. Adipala initiated the RUFORUM African Young Entrepreneurs Competition as a platform for the young Africans seeking to launch a career in enterprise development. Today, this process has attracted a total 2,800 applications from 43 African countries. Fifty three (73) beneficiaries with a US$2,000 investment each have been flagged since 2016. These young African entrepreneurs are actively revolutionizing the agricultural sector and other sectors in which they have built their enterprises; they have purchased agricultural inputs/raw materials from an estimated 70,000 smallholder farmers directly; transforming their livelihoods through provision of direct market access and contract farming. These young innovators have also created over 600 direct jobs in the various enterprises that they are operating across Africa but most importantly, they have inspired other young people across Africa to translate their knowledge into products through enterprise and business development (case of Ms. Smith Oforiwaah Kukuwaa from University of Cape Coast). Success stories of young entrepreneurs leading change and developing agricultural sector; Mr. Ababio Kwame, Gap-Green Afro-Palms, Ghana; Mr. Olusanya Olusegun, Greenway International Foundation, Nigeria; Mr. Owei Anthony Ebitimi, ePoultry Ltd, Nigeria, and Ms. Nabuuma Shamim Kaliisa, Community Dental and Reproductive Health, Uganda. Ms. Nabuuma has been recognised by Forbes Africa 30 under 30 promising young entrepreneurs and change agents rising.
In an effort to catalyse African Universities to train graduates who are job creators and therefore creating income and employment opportunities in Africa, Prof. Adipala working with Vice Chancellors from Gulu University (Uganda) and Egerton University (Kenya) started the Student Enterprise Scheme where students would have the opportunity to pilot in practical sense their business ideas while within the University. The success of this scheme led to the an expanded model now called the RUFORUM Entrepreneurship Challenge Programme (RECAP) being implemented by 16 African Universities in Kenya, Uganda, Ghana, Benin, Ethiopia, Eswatini, DR. Congo, and Burundi. These Incubation hubs are currently supporting over 700 students operating 123 students led enterprises, 120 of which are operating outside the University Campus, directly employing an estimated 700 persons within the one and half years of operations. Meanwhile, the early pilot students have established fully operational enterprises that have survived five years of operations; Mr. Michael Ocoun, runs a contract farming enterprise employing 50 youth directly and about 2,500 smallholder farmers under contract farming; Mr. Onono Paula, Palami Farms-employs six persons and trains annually at least 60 youth in technical skills and agribusiness (now trained 380 youth who also running their own micro-enterprises); Ms. Juliet Auma Ocaya, Dang Pur Farmers Ltd-employs five persons delivering agro-inputs and advisory services to an estimated 16,000 smallholder farmers annually. . Some of these social enterprises have been profiled as follows: poultry feeds and unique formulae, processing and value addition of groundnuts, milk and milk products processing with development farmer to milk processing contract based delivery system (see picture), fish breeding in cages in open waters, and delivery of extension services and trainings for farmers aimed at reducing the effects of wire worms among others. Other student enterprises can be viewed through their websites
Prof. Adipala has now set focus on scaling these initiatives in more robust and expanded manner. Accordingly, he is working with African Governments to build agro-technology parks, incubators and accelerators to support incubation and business acceleration and translation of innovations into viable businesses within Africa. The Government of Uganda has already committed to this partnership under possible project- Youth Employment, Entrepreneurship and Agro-innovation Development in Uganda and a Project Feasibility study is underway; this aims to support 5,000 young Ugandans to create businesses. Additionally, the Government of Zambia has committed to the initiative with official endorsement and expression of interest to the possible funding agency, the Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa (BADEA).
Evidence of transformative change with reference to scalability, replication and sustainability
Prof. Adipala has been on many firsts. At a time when the world did not believe that Africa was ready for doctoral training, Prof. Adipala defied the odds, mobilised African Universities to launch the first taught Doctoral training programmes in Africa based on comparative advantage that each university had at that time. Seventeen (17) regional graduate training programmes are today operational with the earlier ones being PhD in Dryland Resources Management (University of Nairobi, Kenya), PhD in Soil and Water Management (Sokoine University of Agriculture, Tanzania), PhD in Fisheries and Aquaculture and PhD in Agricultural and Resource Economics (Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Malawi), PhD in Plant Breeding and Biotechnology, PhD in Agriculture and Rural Innovations, and Master of Science in Plant Breeding and Biotechnology (Makerere University, Uganda), Master of Science in Agro-meteorology and Natural Risk Management (Haramaya University, Ethiopia). These regional programmes have supported Africa’s mobility initiatives, provided learning points for hosting taught based PhD programmes within Africa and ignited a basis for taught PhD Programmes. Today, taught PhD programmes explosion is happening across Africa with many of the universities seeking to start these programmes visiting Makerere University, Egerton University, Sokoine University, University of Nairobi and Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources for bench marking and best practices sharing. Today, these programmes have supported the training of 526 PhD fellows from across Africa. Overall, the success of these regional academic programmes, was achieved not solely on the effort of Prof. Adipala but a strong commitment of Universities and development partners and actors including; Alliance for Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), International Development Research Centre (IDRC), Carnegie Cooperation of New York, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) that provided funding investment for students recruitment, scholarships and academic staff mobility.
From the Regional PhD and Masters Programmes, a foundation for conversation of Centres of leadership and Excellence was laid. In the 2010, the World Bank involved RUFORUM in designing the Centres of Excellence which eventually led to the launch of the Centres of Excellence model. Prof. Adipala has been instrumental in all these processes as part of advancing institutional reform in higher education for human capacity development. Prof. Adipala through RUFORUM supported the 21 teams across Eastern Africa to competitively respond to the World Bank Centres of Excellence II competitive process; out these 14 projects were approved mobilizing over US$70 million to support science, technology and innovation in African universities. Eventually, some of the Regional Programmes, transitioned into Centers of Excellence such as: Makerere University Centre of Excellence in Crop Improvement, Aquaculture Centre of Excellence, LUANAR (Malawi), Climate Smart Agriculture Centre of Excellence, Haramaya University, (Ethiopia), and The Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Agriculture and Agribusiness Management, Egerton University (building on the lessons of the Student Enterprise Scheme, piloted by Egerton University). These Centers of Excellence will add to Africa 700 PhDs that are highly qualified and will help catalyse agricultural development through the output of various technologies, innovations and management practices. Additionally, these centers are carrying forward Prof. Adipala’s vision of where Africans know and work with each other much more; the regional training and African mobility is well entrenched within the operations of the Centres of Excellence.
Contributions to public discourse, increased awareness and policy advocacy
Prof. Adipala as the Chief Executive Officer of a Pan-African institution-RUFORUM, has played a catalytic role in the engagement of African Universities leadership and policy leaders. He founded the African Higher Education Week and RUFORUM Biennial Conference; initially for science communication and sharing of best practices but expanded it into a convening for University-Policy and Civil Society engagement. Today, RUFORUM convening bring together an estimated 1,200 people from across the global on annual basis. Through these convenings, the Conference of Ministers of Education, Agriculture, Finance, Science, Technology and Innovation is annually held. The first of this meetings was the Ministerial Conference on Higher Education in Agriculture in Africa (CHEA) held in Uganda in 2010 in partnership with the Government of Uganda and the most recently in 2019 held at the University of Cape Coast, Ghana.
Prof. Adipala has led delegations of African Vice Chancellors to lobby with African Heads of State for stronger investment in Higher Education. They have successfully met with the following Heads of State: President of Liberia, H.E. Johnson Sirleaf, President of Malawi, H.E. Arthur Peter Mutharika, H.E. William Ruto, Deputy President of the Republic of Kenya, H.E. George Manneh Weah, President of the Republic of Liberia, Her Excellency Dr. Mrs. Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, President of the Republic of Mauritius and H.E. Hon. Janet Kataha Museveni, Chairpersons of African Union Commission; H.E. Dr. Nkosazana Clarice Dlamini Zuma, and, His Excellency, Moussa Faki Mahamat, Her Excellency Inonge Wina, Acting President of Republic of Zambia, His Excellency, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, President of the Republic of Uganda, and First Lady and Minister of Education and Sports , Uganda and linking Universities, Development partners and Policy leaders.
These diplomatic endeavors have started paying off with African governments committing to put more resources into higher education, science, technology and innovation. The President of Malawi, H.E. Mutharika, hosted a side event on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that called for greater investment in and the role of Universities. The Strengthening African Higher Agricultural Education (SHAEA) project being funded by the World Bank to a tune US$250 million is an initiative was a result of this diplomatic and lobbying missions. Further, the engagement and advocacy among policy leaders led to the African Union Commission to establish the Committee of Ten (C10) African Heads of State championing education, science and technology in 2016. Prof. Adipala has been instrumental in this process including preparing the technical documents for deliberations at the First C10 Convening in Malawi in partnership with other bodies such as the African Capacity Building Foundation. In the C10 declaration, the role of Universities in development and the leadership of RUFORUM is duly recognised as highlighted in the Action Plan.

YouTube or LinkedIn Link ( If Available )ruforum.org
Letter to prove your eligibility:Letter to prove your eligibility:
Letter of endorsement:Adipala-Ekwamu-recommendation-letter.pdf
Nominee's current curriculum vitae or Bio:2021_Adipala-Contribution-CV.pdf