“Nyama choma” the Swahili name for roasted meat, is a delicacy that’s popular with Kenyans especially the urban dwellers. It is mostly taken during events and holidays and considered to be a luxury rather than a staple/basic meal.
With this knowledge Mr. Antony Mwangi who is only 26 decided to take the making of “Nyama Choma” to another level thus from a smoky roasted meat to a smokeless undertaking but still containing its nutrition and tasty flavor.
He plans to overhaul the smoky “Nyama Choma” by innovating a special kind of “jiko” that would be controlled by a mobile device application during the process of roasting meat.
“With a mobile-based application, you would be able to control the appliance’s heat at some distance. Once the meat is ready, you receive an alert through the mobile.” said Mr.Mwangi.
He added that if all goes well the new invention will make it easier for single “nyama choma” attendant to operate several stoves while serving or running other errands. “Makes it easy and saves times, actually it improves on the quality of the roasted meat because it will hardly get burnt or come out raw” he said
However, Mr.Karanja, a businessman in one of the biggest restaurant in Nairobi noted that Mr.Mwangi’s invention is great but asked him to watch China closely . “China is taking over almost all hardware and electronics needs here in Kenya.” he said. “I would like to urge him to focus more on software components, he could even obtain cheap hardware from China and zip it together with software to create Kenya focused solutions.” he suggested.
Mr.Reinard Otieno, who has been in the meat industry for almost five years now agreed with Mr. Karanja’s adding that the Kenyan government, needs to support and fund him. “I admire his efforts and I urge the youths to make use of their talents and create more job opportunities. “He said. “Together we can build this country if only we put our creative ideas into practice.” he added.
Mr.Mwangi noted that the app is at its fancy stage and more details will emerge as it takes shape. He added that this invention is just tip of the iceberg; his plans are to change Kenya’s technological face in the next few years by offering electronics training in schools, institutions and to individuals.
“I want to inspire a new generation of Kenyan innovators. Within the next two years, I want to change the face of Kenya in terms of technology, it is time we stopped importing electronic devices,” he says. To him electronics is the foundation for innovation.
He has already trained students at Lenana School and a robotics club at Moi Forces Academy, Nairobi. “The students are very creative and we want to tap into that potential. The good thing about robotics and electronics is that they are fun to learn and capable of keeping students away from vices during school holidays,” he says.
He is working on developing a program in which students can attend training during school holidays.
Mr.Mwangi is a man of his words. By the time he was a second year student at the University of Nairobi, he had at least six inventions to his name, which earned him cash and fame among his schoolmates. He has two permanent staff members and hires more others on contract.