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Emmanuellah Lekete-Lawson

Emmanuellah Lekete-Lawson

Chief Technologist


Plant pathology, Microbiology, Molecular biology

Contact Info


About The Staff Member

Emmanuellah Lekete is a renowned Pathologist with expertise in plant disease diagnosis, plant disease management, mycology, fungal genetics, molecular biology, Bacteriology, Entomopathogen, Statistics, and Research methodology. She holds BSc. in Agric. Economics and an M.Phil in Crop Protection-Plant Pathology-option in Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology. She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. program in Plant Pathology-Molecular plant pathology –option in Auburn University, Alabama, USA.  She was a scholar under Borlaug Higher Education for Agriculture Research and Development (BHEARD). She carried out certain aspects of her M.Phil. research work at Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana, Akyem Tafo in the Eastern region.  She served as a Chairperson in both local and international conferences including the 4th International Conference and Workshop for Women in Science without Borders in Brazil.
She served as both Service Personal and French teacher during her national service at the Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana in 2009. She was a Research Assistant in charge of Mycorrhiza extraction at CSIR-Forestry Research Institute of Ghana under the Carbon Usage Efficiency Project (CUE-GEOCARBON) an European FP7 project. Emmanuellah joined the CSIR-Oil Palm Research Institute in 2016 and immediately started running the Institute’s Pathology laboratory. Over the years, she has worked on numerous diseases both on oil palm and coconut which are mandatory crops of CSIR-OPRI. Her research includes the use of principles of disease diagnosis techniques in diagnosing variant plant diseases and in producing disease-free planting materials for the institute. She also researched into Plant Biofungicides extractions, New pathogens and disease reports, use of integrated disease management (IDM) techniques to manage plant diseases both under in vitro and in vivo conditions,  use of molecular tools for early disease detection and prevention, molecular assisted techniques to facilitate disease screening and breeding of resistant varieties using transcriptomics and metabolomics, as well as the application of Genetic Engineering technology to improve plant disease management.

Emmanuellah is currently the head of Plant Pathology Division and a principal investigator for the following projects:


  • Ganoderma situation and Strategic management of Basal Stem Rot (BSR) disease on oil palm plantation in part of the Western and Eastern regions of Ghana,
  • New pathogens and disease reports on oil palm and coconut seedlings in Eastern and Ashanti regions of Ghana,
  • Evaluation of Plant Extracts as Biofungicide to Control Leaf Spots Disease on Coconut Seedlings in Ghana,
  • The use of Biostimulants as climate change adaptation strategies to control BSR disease on oil palm.

She has played a key role in plant disease management and upgrading Plant Pathology Division (PPD) of CSIR-OPRI which now provides oil palm/coconut disease diagnostic services for the Institute and serves as a support lab for the LandCare Research Centre, at International Collection of Microorganisms from Plants, (ICMP) in Auckland New Zealand and Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA), Ghana and assist in institutional training programs and Students internship programs. Also, through the collaboration with other molecular labs including Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana, Functional Biosciences in USA and LandCare Research Centre New Zealand, Emmanuellah involved in identifying and discovering several new pathogens or host-pathogen combinations, in an average of 5 per year, on oil palm and coconut and other alternative hosts such as cocoa (Theobroma cacao L.) Among the most interesting ones she identified includes Dieback foliar disease of oil palm, Leaf spot on oil palm seedlings caused by Pestalotiopsis sp, Damping-off disease on coconut seedlings caused by (Phytophthora sp.), Basal Stem Rot on mature oil palm (Ganoderma boninense), Leaf spot disease on coconut caused by Curvularia pseudobrachyspora, etc.

Ms. Lekete has authored over Twenty (20) scientific publications comprising refereed journal papers, books, book chapters, conference papers, field guides, and Research technical reports and Approved Consultancy reports most of which have been published in very reputable high impact local and international journals.
As a very experienced scientist, she has trained several technicians, University students, and researchers in the application of disease management techniques and also served as a resource person on quiet a number of training programs held within and outside the Institute. She also consults and contributes expertise to the running of several plant Pathology laboratories in many organizations both in Ghana and abroad.

Education & Certification

PhD Student, Plant Pathology-Molecular plant pathology –option Auburn University, Alabama, USA.
MPhil, Crop protection (Plant Pathology/Microbiology) Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology
BSc, Agric. Economics Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology


CSIR-Oil Palm Research Institute, P.O.Box KD 74, Kade, Eastern Region.

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