Her Excellency Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, PhD, President of the Republic of Mauritius, received the American Botanical Council’s ABC’s 2016 Norman R. Farnsworth Excellence in Botanical Research Award.
Dr Gurib-Fakim, who was unable to attend the awards ceremony in Anaheim, was elected as Mauritius’s first female president in 2015. She leads her country as an advocate for African medicinal plants, and has made valuable contributions to the knowledge of the medicinal properties of plants growing on Mauritius and the surrounding islands in the Indian Ocean, said ABC in a release.
“ABC is deeply honored to be able to recognize the excellent ethnobotanical, pharmacognostic, and conservation efforts and publications of Her Excellency Dr. Ameenah Gurib-Fakim,” said Blumenthal. “Her tireless work on medicinal plants in the Indian Ocean and East African region has already garnered several well-deserved and high-profile international awards.”
“Biodiversity and indigenous knowledge systems underpin life on earth,” said Dr Gurib-Fakim in a statement. “Africa’s unique biodiversity will continue to offer humankind new leads and medicine provided that we conserve, document, and validate the traditional knowledge associated with medicinal plants. The latter remains a reservoir of innovative ingredients that not only respond to the needs of industry but also buffer us against ailments that do not yet exist.”