ARTICLE 1: PREAMBLE
Since gaining political independence, most African countries are still beset by a myriad of social, economic and political problems. Available statistics on socio-economic activity portray a worsening or stagnant trend for the continent. Viewed against a backdrop of crippling debt burdens, run-away population growth rates, political strife, declining income from exports, continued dependence on imported goods and declining food production per capita, the problems facing this continent seem almost insurmountable. Yet, in spite of this doomsday scenario, Africa’s hopes for a quantum leap may not at all be misplaced. There is hope that Africa might somehow pull itself from the present situation and duplicate the economic miracles that have been achieved by some Asian countries. One important element that could be instrumental in achieving such an objective is the adoption of strategies that incorporate science into all development programmes. It is widely accepted that Africa’s hope for radical breakthroughs lies in the creation and exploitation of an indigenous science and technology (S&T) infrastructure that could provide a motive force for the exploitation of the continent’s rich heritage for sustainable development. The problems facing the continent in areas such as food production, loss of biodiversity, human and animal diseases all call for scientific solutions.
The subjects of biochemistry and molecular biology play a pivotal role in fields such as agriculture, medicine, conservation of biodiversity. For example, modern biotechnology, whose potential impact on agriculture and medicine is already well recognized, is based largely on biochemistry and molecular biology. Similarly, these subjects have had tremendous impacts on the food industry and mining. Despite these obvious points, Africa still lags behind other continents in research involving biochemistry and molecular biology. In addition, there is no Pan-African body that promotes research and education in these important fields. It is this realization that led to the idea of forming a federation of societies dealing with biochemistry and molecular biology in Africa.
ARTICLE 2: NAME OF THE FEDERATION
The name of the Federation (hereafter referred to as "the Federation") shall be FEDERATION OF AFRICAN SOCIETIES OF BIOCHEMISTRY AND MOLECULAR BIOLOGY (FASBMB).
ARTICLE 3: OBJECTIVES OF THE FEDERATION
The Federation is established with the overall objective of promoting research and education in the fields of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology for the benefit of the African continent. In furtherance of this objective, the Federation undertakes to:
- develop networks of collaborative research in biochemistry and molecular biology among institutions in Africa and between them and other institutions in the rest of the world;
- disseminate information on biochemistry and molecular biology among its members both within and outside the African continent.
- organize seminars, symposia and conferences in order to promote the knowledge of biochemistry and molecular biology among its members.
- (contribute towards capacity building in the fields of biochemistry and molecular biology by organizing short courses; identifying funding opportunities for postgraduate training; and assisting African institutions in developing curricula for the teaching of biochemistry and molecular biology.
- establish and maintain contacts with organizations with similar objectives, such as Federation of European Biochemical Societies (FEBS), Federation of Asian and Oceania Biochemists and Molecular Biologists (FAOBMB), Pan American Association of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (PAABMB) and International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (IUBMB).