A 29-YEAR-OLD Ghanaian scientist who has excelled in his field of study in the United States of America after ten years of academic work, has said he intends to visit the country to transform the health sector with his expertise.
Zaher Shabani, who has received 55 awards, has helped to build a scientific and leadership foundation, and a network within Schering-Plough Corporation, one of the world's largest pharmaceutical companies.
“I am planning to return home to share my breakthrough by helping to transform the country's healthcare system into one that can deliver long term high performance through its commitment to scientific, excellence, technology, innovation, business, integrity and standards compliance,” Shabani told curious journalists.
He continued, “Two reasons why I want to visit Ghana is that my mother and my people deserve the best in health care system; also, I am fulfilling a promise I made to my mother some years back.”
Shabani graduated from the County College of Morris (CCM) in New Jersey in 2001 with an associate degree in chemistry and continued to Rutgers University where he majored in biochemistry and worked as a research assistant. Having graduated with honours, Shabani was hired by Schering-Plough Corporation.
He is responsible for performing physical and chemical characterizations of new drug lead compounds and preformulation studies for development candidates for respiratory, cardiovascular and neurological diseases.
Besides being a scientist, he is the leader and responsible for the safety of about 700 Schering-Plough employees.
He is currently pursuing a Master's degree in Biotechnology at Columbia University and is expected to graduate by December this year.
Shabani was born on January 23, 1979 in Kumasi to Mr. A. M. Shabani and Mrs. Najet Shabani and attended Prempeh College completing in 1997. Shabani then traveled to the US in 1998 to attend CCM.
Shabani is also involved in analytical method development and formulation support for preclinical activities such as pharmacokinetics, pharmacological and toxicological studies.
By dint of hard work and being an honours student at Columbia University, his alma mater (CCM) has recognized and honoured him for being a worthy ambassador by featuring him on billboards across New Jersey.
Shabani has many publications and presentations to his credit as well as three patents. He also serves on a number of professional and leadership committees and organizations.
He is a recipient of the Schering-Plough 2005 President's Award for Discovery.
Shabani has received the Golden Key Scholar Award by the Golden Key International Honour Society which has more than a million lifetime members and 12,000 honorary members including Presidents Clinton and Reagan, UNCF President William Gray, Nobel Prize Winner Elie Wiesel and Secretary of State, General Colin Powell.
From Fred J.A. Ibrahim Jnr., Kumasi.