Contrary to expectations, the impressive turn-out of participants at the just concluded 16th Triennial Symposium of International Society for Tropical Root Crops (ISTRC) has widely beaten the projection of the organizer.

Checks by FUNAAB Bulletin revealed that attendance at the symposium over-shot a benchmark of 200 Scientists from 32 countries, hitherto projected.

According to findings, as at press time on Wednesday afternoon, the organizer had registered 317 participants from 42 countries, which is a sharp increase and excess of 117 participants from ten additional countries.

The Chairman, Local Organising Committee of ISTRC Symposium, Professor Lateef Sanni, confirmed the figure in a chat with FUNAAB Bulletin.

According to him, “By projection we were expecting 200 Scientists from 32 Countries but as at yesterday (last Wednesday) evening, we had 317 registered participants from 42 countries”.

Professor Sanni attributed the development to the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Olusola Bandele Oyewole’s initiative, who prior to the commencement of the symposium directed that activities therein must be relayed live on the website.

His words, “Don’t forget that before we started, we had a security threat. Most of the participants did not arrive on time. They were sending signals,“Have you arrived”? However, immediately people started sending E-mails and that is another commendation for the Vice-Chancellor”.

“Immediately they arrived, they started asking us, “are you sure there is internet? We said yes. They couldn’t believe it. Two, we had our opening activities live on the website and people were monitoring what we were doing all over the world. That was why people started buying flight tickets and coming down”, he added.