By Peter Orengo
Five Kenyan scientists were feted for their exemplary innovations at the ongoing African Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation in Nairobi.
Calvine Okello from M-Shamba was awarded for inventing a new mobile application whose objective is to provide agricultural information to farmers about agricultural activities in the country and beyond.
The application informs people where to get the best agricultural products and gives farmers timely information on when to plant and the best practices on agriculture.
"We came up with M-Shamba application because agriculture is the back-bone of Kenyafs economy. This innovation is meant to help rural farmers avoid unnecessary losses due to lack of information," said Mr Okello after receiving his award from President Kibaki.
Prof Richard Mibei, Vice-Chancellor of Moi University, was awarded for coming up with a dye for the textile industry, which he named Tamidye.
The product is now being used by clothing company Rivatex Industries, owned by Moi University, based in Eldoret.
Mbetsa Technologies Limited was feted for its revolutionary car tracking and security system, which uses a mobile phone to track and deliver actual geographical position of any vehicle when stolen.
The system accurately indicates the actual location, speed at which the vehicle is going and its travel direction.
Laurence Matolo from Machakos Technical Training Institution was feted for his innovation, Multipurpose seed Based Absorber. The innovation is based on the unique behaviour of the seeds of a local weed, which takes up to 20 times their weight of water in 30 minutes and become sticky.
Scientists at the conference said Matolofs innovation could be used in the production of sanitary towels in the country.
Elijah Kupata was awarded for a 3G mobile remote camera, which is able to detect the presence of an intruder in onefs house or property, then sends live video to the homeowner.