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Five young researchers from Africa have been awarded by the Society for AIDS in Africa (SAA) for their outstanding research geared towards tackling the HIV/AIDS menace on the continent.
The ceremony to honor the personalities took place at a side event during the 17th ICASA in Cape Town, South Africa.
Each of the awardees in the five categories was given a cash prize of US $3,000, after their abstracts had undergone serious review and selection by the ICASA 2013 scientific reviewers.
The essence of the awards according to SAA was to recognize excellence and promote and motivate young researchers involved in the HIV/AIDS scientific field.
Hence, the “establishment of the ICASA Young Investigator Awards”, the SAA indicated.
The awardees were Dr. Moustapha Mbow , Mr. Adzavon Yao Mawuli, Dr. Admire Chikandiwa, Ms. Sarah Skeen and Dr. Edna Maselle.
The young researchers were recognized in the following areas, Basic Science and Immunology, Clinical Science, Treatment and Care, Epidemiology and Prevention Science, Social Science, Human Rights and Political Science and Health Systems, Economics and Implementation Science, respectively.
In his remarks, Dr. Louis Sambo, WHO African Executive Director, congratulated SAA for their contribution in ensuring a decline in HIV/AIDS infections on the continent but acknowledged that there is a long way to go, in addressing issues related to the disease.
“I laud the performance of the SAA executives and also ask for continuous motivation for young researchers”, he noted.
Prof. Robert Soudre, SAA – President, also congratulated the awardees and encouraged them not to relent on their work.
During the function some SAA board members were given honorary awards for their tremendous commitment to Africa’s response to the AIDS epidemic.
Three people were also recognized for demonstrating tremendous commitment to Africa’s response to the AIDS epidemic. They are Prof. Babatunde Osototimehin who is the fourth Executive Director of UNFPA , the United Nations Population Fund and holds the rank of under -secretary general, Prof Jerry Coovadia , who is based in Durban and is implementing documented research findings on maternal , new born and child health and Dr Tewodros Adhanom, the minister of foreign Affairs of the federal republic of Ethiopia.