Monday, March 7, 2011

A mwananchi from Kenya, Gabriel Nderitu, builds plane in his front yard

I once shared a story of Morris Mbetsa - an 18 year old African self-taught electronics genius. Well, another Kenyan makes an appearance here. I saw my friend Henry @disterics share this info - "Kenyan builds plane in front yard" on Google Buzz and I didn't waste any time in killing my curiosity. Mwananchi is a Swahili word meaning the common man.

A Kenyan man has used the internet and some books on engineering to build his own aircraft. Gabriel Nderitu has dreamt of flying since he was a child and has spent a huge amount of money building the plane in his front yard. But his dream may be grounded as the authorities say it is not airworthy.

Click the link to watch the video

I think it is really sad I could not embed the video from the BBC link to this blogpost. I already am not a fan of the BBC Africa site and not allowing folks to embed such a great vimacious video is sad. So I went to Youtube to see if I'd have any luck. And I found these videos.

An innovative Kenyan is just about to test the results of his brainchild. Gabriel Nderitu, an I.T specialist is putting final touches to an aeroplane he has been assembling for the last one year ahead of a test run in Kitengela next week. If indeed Nderitu's two seater plane takes off, and more importantly, lands successfully, then it will be a first for Kenya. Sylvia Chebet tells us more about the budding innovator and how close he is to becoming Kenya's pioneer in aircraft manufacturing.

These videos are from Kenya's KenyaCitizenTv and PositiveBlackStories and got onto Youtube 4 months before the story appeared on the BBC. I will give BBC credit for making sure the story got to a bigger audience though, after all, that's how Henry found the story and then myself.

Nderitu says the point is to inspire and build confidence in the youth.


PS: Killing one's curiosity that quickly can be problematic especially when you need the same curiosity to kill the cat ;-)
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