Rwanda is looking to establish the first ever a drone academy by next year as a move to address some challenge of having few drone experts in the country by training experts locally, a senior government official was quoted by local media Thursday as saying.
The Ministry of Information Communication, Technology and Innovation, Paula Ingabire, said Rwanda, like other countries, has few skilled citizens who can use drones to solve social and economic challenges across the country, one of the reasons why the government is planning
to invest heavily in the forthcoming academy.
"The plan is training as many people as possible in using drones in several sectors including Health, agriculture and others. So far, people who are skilled are few, not in Rwanda only but also in other countries that have been using drones for a long time," the senior government official said.
“We need many local experts that can manufacture, repair and use drones. These are challenges the academy will solve, we have finished the study for its establishment. Currently, we are looking for partners and in the near future, the construction will start.”
Rwanda is on the list of countries that will benefit from a new partnership between Zipline, one of the world’s biggest drone delivery service for medical supplies, with Pfizer to test and develop an end-to-end distribution solution for Covid-19 vaccines.
The partnership will see Zipline and Pfizer test and develop an end-to-end distribution solution for Covid-19 vaccines that will among other things safely and reliably transport the doses to vaccination sites, it said.
Zipline currently delivers blood across different hospitals in Rwanda using unmanned aerial vehicles.
Since January last year, Rwanda have been testing drones for the first time to help fight malaria as an innovation which is to complement a set of existing strategies to prevent and combat the disease.
The drones being used in fighting malaria have the capacity to fly for about 15 minutes on a single battery and ability to spray an area of 40 hectares in a day, it said.