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Stellenbosch lets slip one Kwame Nkrumah winner

South Africa’s Dave Richardson, a prominent researcher in invasion biology, has won the African Union’s premier science prize, the Kwame Nkrumah Award for Scientific Excellence.

Stellenbosch University, Richardson’s home institution, announced the news on 28 January. However, there have always been two winners of the award each year in the past, with the AU usually announcing the names during the opening of its January/February summit.

So far the AU has been mum about who the winners might be, with requests for confirmation of Richardson’s award not confirmed by the AU at time of this article’s publication.

The award is worth US$100,000 for each winner, and will be awarded to Richardson and—presumably—another as yet undisclosed winner on 10 February when the summit begins.

Richardson is one of South Africa’s most highly regarded scientists. He is one of only 15 African researchers on Clarivate Analytics’ list of the world’s highly cited researchers. He also holds the highest rating from the National Research Foundation, an A-rating, identifying him as an international leader in his field.

“I hope that [the award] will help to spread awareness of the massive problems with invasive species worldwide, and the urgent need for innovative solutions to prevent the escalation of impacts on biodiversity and human livelihoods,” said Richardson in a statement from SU.