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Gobabeb Research & Training Centre

TIKA Donation to Gobabeb

TURKISH COOPERATION AND COORDINATION AGENCY DONATES SUZUKI GYPSY PICKUP TO SUPPORT SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH AT GOBABEB RESEARCH AND TRAINING CENTRE 

On Tuesday 4 July, 2017, Gobabeb Research and Training Centre in the Namib Desert received a Suzuki Gypsy pick-up from the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA).

A delegation from TIKA, which implements projects in more than a hundred countries on five continents, attended the presentation ceremony on Tuesday, 4 July, 2017.

TIKA representative, Mr. Abdulkadir Abukan, who mentioned that in 2016 Turkey was named as the most generous country for foreign aid per GDP, donating almost 6 billion US dollars internationally, says “We are very impressed by the work being done at Gobabeb. We are especially happy to be able to assist, in this way, in the work being done to help train the next generation of Namibian scientists."

Gobabeb, situated in the red dunes of the Namib Desert, offers both international and Namibian students and scientists the opportunity to work in one of the foremost dryland research centres in the world. The mission of Gobabeb is to act as a catalyst for gathering, understanding and sharing knowledge of arid environments and inspiring an appreciation for the value of the Namib Desert. ‘This is a very exciting place to bring our students,’ says J. Scott Turner, biology professor at State University of New York’s College of Environmental Science and Forestry, who is currently on site facilitating an international post-graduate course in biophysical field methods.

Executive Director of Gobabeb, Dr. Gillian Maggs-Kölling, is grateful for this generous gift from TIKA. ‘The Suzuki Gypsy is the perfect vehicle for the research station,’ she says. ‘It is agile enough to transport our researchers into the difficult sand-sea terrain of the Namib, but is also large enough to carry equipment and six passengers at a time. Plus it’s fuel efficient, which is always a priority for us at Gobabeb.’

For Research Technician Ritha Kapitango, the Suzuki Gypsy is a welcome research tool. ‘I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to slog up and down dunes walking and carrying equipment. This is going to make research a lot more efficient and easier.’

While it is traditional to celebrate a special gift with a red ribbon-cutting ceremony, in this case, a green ribbon, symbolizing the welwitschia plant, was cut. ‘The welwitschia is one of the more charismatic plants endemic to the Namib Desert and it looks a bit like a ribbon,’ says Maggs-Kölling, who was recently named one of six recipients of the Parrot Climate Grant, which designated her as a leader in innovative climate change research. ‘Here at Gobabeb, we love to promote all things green, especially our endemic plant life!’

For more information, please contact Dr. Gillian Maggs-Kölling at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

For more information on TIKA, please view: www.tika.gov.tr or contact the Country Coordinator of TIKA at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it /en

Story: Deborah J. Goemans: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

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