Ssremba Godfrey

Godfrey Sseremba is a male Ugandan and graduate with an MSc Crop Science and BSc Agriculture of Makerere University. He is now a student taking a Doctor of Philosophy in Plant Breeding at West Africa Centre for Crop Improvement (WACCI), University of Ghana.  His research focus is breeding of Solanum aethiopicum Shum group for water use efficiency and drought tolerance (DT). The S. aethiopicum Shum group is a commercial leafy vegetable crop mainly grown in Uganda, Cameroon, and Nigeria. Other groups of the S. aethiopicum such as the Gilo (fruit type) are cultivated on a global scale. His work involved genetic characterization and identification of parental material for drought tolerance (DT) traits and water use efficiency (WUE). He further conducted combining ability studies of selected germplasm for the WUE/DT trait(s) and leaf yield. From the combining ability study, parents with good general combining ability (GCA) and specific combining ability (SCA) will feed into a novel breeding program at Faculty of Science and Technology, Uganda Christian University for development of improved varieties for the leafy vegetable. He also developed an F2 mapping population for quantitative trait loci (QTLs) mapping of drought tolerance traits in the leafy vegetable. The S. aethiopicum is the third most important solanaceous species after tomato and potato, cultivated because of its nutritional value and potential for income generation for smallholder farmers (especially women) in sub-Saharan Africa; though its current productivity is low because of numerous constraints including drought stress and because of limited research attention to the crop. As such, Mr. Godfrey Sseremba is dedicated at generating information that will contribute towards the establishment of the first breeding program for the sub-species.