May 2, 2017
Dignitaries, among them Hon. Salakae (in a maroon jacket) and Hon. Losibe (2nd from right) listening to a presentation by a Ghanzi Brigade student.
BITRI participated in the World Intellectual Property Day (WIPD) commemorations held in D’Kar on April 26. The event, celebrated under the theme “Innovation – Improving Lives” challenged people to explore how innovation can make lives healthier, safer and more comfortable.
The deliberations and exhibitions on the day, explored how the intellectual property system supports innovation by attracting investment, rewarding creators, encouraging them to develop their ideas, and ensuring that their new knowledge is freely available so that tomorrow’s innovators can build on today’s new technology.
In welcoming stakeholders to the event, D’kar’s Kgosi April Montshosi thanked the organisers for identifying D’Kar as a suitable location for the commemoration, adding that the gathering will give state of the art D’kar Innovation Centre located in the village some exposure in addition to putting the village on the map.
Different presentations highlighted amongst others, the importance of protecting intellectual property to maximize commercial gains from innovations and inventions, and also developing innovative solutions to problems that specific communities, the country and the world face. BITRI focused on how the organization has worked and is still working with stakeholders to come up with solutions that are relevant to the lives of the people. Visitors were taught on the importance of protecting IP related to their innovations and inventions and how they could benefit from the process and financial proceeds.
Delegates amongst them, Member of Parliament for Gantsi North, Hon. Noah Salakae, Gantsi Council Vice Chairman, Hon. Greg Xuthye Losibe, Director at the Department of Research, Science and Technology, Ms. Lesego Thamae, and Ghanzi Brigade Principal, Mr. Olefhile Mochotlhi were treated to demonstrations of exhibits by Ghanzi Brigade students and enrollees of the D’Kar Innovation Centre.
In the Closing Remarks, MP Salakae shone the spotlight on the D’kar Innovation Centre and the positive cooperation between the centre and the community and he encouraged the stakeholders to recognize that innovation and intellectual property can be used for sustainable economic growth, poverty alleviation and employment creation.
WIPD is celebrated annually on April 26, with a view to learn about the role that intellectual property rights (patents, trademarks, industrial designs, copyright) play in encouraging innovation and creativity. The World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) provides a theme each year, and member states use the day for awareness creation and for deliberating on how IP can be harnessed for economic diversification.
Exhibitors at the event included Companies and Intellectual Property Authority (CIPA), Copyright Society of Botswana (COSBOTS), Botswana Innovation Hub (BIH), Department of Research Science and Technology (DRST), and Local Enterprise Authority (LEA).