Nairobi — President William Ruto has asked universities to strengthen research and innovation to provide solutions to security threats facing the country.
He argued that research and innovation remain the cornerstones of progress.
The Head of State emphasized on the need for universities to invest on research and help the Government in addressing challenges ocassioned by terrorism and radicalisation.
“We need students to come up with thesis on how we can confront terrorism and other emerging security threats,” said President Ruto.
President Ruto noted that through research and innovation, the country can acquire the tools to tackle difficult problems, the means of taking informed decisions, and access the opportunity to turn the tide of development ‘in our favour’.
“There is no better foundation on which to establish our defence and security policy and strategy than research and innovation, because in so doing, we stay ahead of all our competition, threats and challenges at all times,” said President Ruto.
The President made the remarks on Friday, during the inaugural graduation ceremony of the National Defence University- Kenya, Lanet in Nakuru County.
He exuded confidence that through research undertaken in the university, the country can adapt to an increasingly complicated present and future, and resilience to novel adversities.
He said the move will enable the country keep development safe and secure for shared posperity.
“The purpose of institutions like this is to investigate the nature and causes of these threats, how they are affected by various economic, geopolitical, environmental and even cultural factors, both singly and in combination, and the implications for defence and security strategy,” he said.
The President maintained that the university will contribute to strengthening Kenya’s position as an education hub as well as enhance the country’s capacity to align with the evolving regional and global security environment.
The Head of State, at the same time, challenged the graduands to embrace their role as leaders and commanders with a strong sense of purpose, vision, curiosity, inspiration and patriotism.
“Allow knowledge to lead the way, and let innovation and research inform your steps; you will go far,” he said.
He told them to always feed curiosity through debate, reinforce innovation with challenging questions and disrupt productively in order to stay at the cutting edge in a rapidly sharpening world.
“Most importantly, be courageous enough to embrace emerging approaches and new technologies like artificial intelligence, robotics, quantum computing and innovative cybersecurity strategies in order to protect national interests and critical infrastructures,” he said.
He argued that as officers, they should deploy data and analytics to anticipate threats and develop effective and efficient solutions.
“Remain alert for opportunities to collaborate across disciplines and enrich your decisions with input from experts in diverse fields. This is how you build and sustain capacity to prevail in the face of complex challenges,” noted President Ruto.
Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu told the management of the university to come up with innovative programs to fund their projects.
“Funding from the Government might not sustain all programmes in universities. This is why institutions should be innovative and initiate projects that can give them extra funds,” said Mr Machogu.
Defence CS Aden Duale said the institution will go a long way in providing solutions to challenges facing the security sector.
Chief of Defense Forces Francis Ogolla and Vice Chancellor SM Farah said the institution will help address challenges of insecurity through research and innovation.
Mr Farah said the university will focus more in exploring ways of addressing challenges facing the security sector among other areas.
Present was Nakuru Governor Susan Kihika among other leaders. – Presidential Communication Service