Tanzania has been ranked the second country in Sub- Saharan Africa for putting in place a modern laboratory complex that increases safety and control of radiation sources locally.
Speaking at a short ceremony to lay the foundation stone at Tanzania Atomic Energy Commission (TAEC) Headquarters at Njiro, in the outskirts of Arusha City, the body’s Director-General, Prof Lazaro Busagala accompanied by the Minister for Education, Science, Technology and Vocational Training, Professor Joyce Ndalichako said that the laboratory will put the country ahead of the other five East African countries in strengthening its services through calibrating and testing of radiation detection equipment.
The foundation stone for the complex was laid at TAEC Headquarters at Njiro, in the outskirts of Arusha City by the Minister for Education, Science, Technology and Vocational Training, Professor Joyce Ndalichako.
Prof Busagala further said that Tanzania will be the second country after South Africa in the region to build such a complex and modern lab that meets international standards in atomic energy and nuclear instrumentation.
The laboratory will be of a great value and use in the implementation of industrialisation policy, especially in the mining sector as the country prepares to start mining uranium.
The first phase of the lab will cost 2.5bn/- and was launched by Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa last year.
The Director General further said that the laboratory will be of value to more than 120 centres, which are working association with radiation and atomic energy services, adding: “It will increase efficiency in the field, support industries, cancer treatment, produce professionals and help in food preservation. “Research and increase awareness of radiation and nuclear science among the members of the public, and in this case, TAEC will be able to process up to 40,000 samples per year up from the current 27,000.”
On her part, Minister Ndalichako hailed TAEC for the good work it has been doing, and in the process thanked its contractor for being ahead with the work.
She said that it will see Tanzania securing more use of radiation and nuclear for development.
In explanation, she pointed out that the modern facility will serve needs of more people and institutions in the country and beyond.
In that regard the commission will increase its capacity to carry out its mandate according to the Atomic Energy Act No. 7, 2003 that effectively demands high expertise, as it contributes to great prosperity in the fields of agriculture, livestock development, health, water resource, mining, industries and energy in the country.