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Keynote Address by Hon. Fortune Charumbira, President P For The Closing session of the Lorentz Conference The Road to FAIR and Equitable Science 26 January 2024


Key-note address by Hon. Fortune Charumbira, President of the Pan African Parliament of the African Union, For the Closing session of the Lorentz Conference - The Road to FAIR and Equitable Science, 26 January 2024


Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,

All protocol observed,

It is an honour to speak at this closing day of a week in which distinguished scientists from all over the globe have been working on a roadmap to FAIR and equitable Science.

Africa has its place in this discussion.

We are proud of our initiatives on the continent: the African Open Science Platform, Co-Data Africa, VODAN and the African University Network on FAIR Open Science.

The corona-crisis taught us the value of data, that Africa must have and curate its own data.

We need this data for vaccine development, for the training of AI solutions for health and to study the side-effects of medicines in Africa.

We have much to gain by health care in which patient data is used for better care for the patients.

We think of Africa as a data-visiting place; if you want to learn from Africa or contribute to Africa, you can visit our data.

In Africa we want data to be Findable, Accessible under well-defined conditions, Interoperable and Re-usable, Owned in Location under Regulatory Compliance.

We call it FAIR-OLR.

Africa is a continent of greenfield full of youthful potential which welcomes innovation.

The operational work of the VODAN technical team shows we are capable of rapid creation and adoption of innovation.


VODAN is now creating the African Health Data Space which is to the advantage of our citizens to create this.


As the Pan African Parliament we embrace the African Union Digital Roadmap and we will contribute to help set the standards for a roadmap that serves the interest of the citizens of our great continent.


In Africa we believe knowledge always belongs to a community and that the community should give permission to visitors to share the value of this community.

VODAN has showcased this can translate to the digital world.

The PAP pledges to formulate a recommendation for an African-led standard based on the African worldview which is centred around the power of a community where there is trust.

This is our promise to you here today:

Africa welcomes your roadmap for FAIR and Equitable Science, and we will make it our own.


Hon. Fortune Charumbira, 

President of the Pan African Parliament of the African Union