Amendments to Research, Science and Technology Act possible: André du Pisani

WINDHOEK: The Research, Science and Technology Act can be amended if crucial amendments are required, the chairperson of the National Commission on Research, Science and Technology (NCRST) André du Pisani says.

He was speaking at the opening of a two-day national consultative workshop on the development of the national research, science, technology, and innovation programme (NRSTIP) in Windhoek yesterday.

The programme will address challenges and opportunities in the national innovation system by devising appropriate interventions for an enabling framework in policy areas, human resources and institutional framework.

Du Pisani said there is a public outcry about the Act and researchers have raised their concerns, adding that there will be follow-up meetings to deal with these concerns and if the Act needs to be amended, they will do it.

The Research, Science and Technology Act No 23 of 2004 has caused widespread protest amongst the public and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) over the past few years as there are concerns that the Act and the regulations are aimed at controlling and limiting research and enquiries.

The co-ordinator of the Gender Research and Advocacy Project at the Legal Assistance Centre (LAC), Dianne Hubbard told Nampa yesterday the LAC intends to take Government to court over the proposed research regulation of the Ministry of Education, which it considers as unconstitutional.