Malawi’s young innovator in ICT based Innovations, Mixon Faluweki has won an Excellence Award at the ITU Telecom World 2015 in Budapest with his Padoko Charger Creation.
Faluweki realised that although only 11% of rural households in his country are connected to the electricity grid, 47% own a bicycle. So he came up with a device that can charge a cell phone using just pedal power.
His invention “the Padoko” got him to the finals of a prestigious global tech innovation prize.
Faluweki developed the phone charger last year in his third year Electronics class and he has just completed his first degree in Education Science, majoring in Physics at the University of Malawi’s Chancellor College.
He received the award on Thursday 15th Octobe at a ceremony chaired by ITU’s Secretary General, Houlin Zhao.
Padoko Charger is a bicycle powered phone charger that allows people using bicycle to charge their mobile phones as they ride.
It is probably the cheapest means of charging mobile phones to people who do not have access to home electricity in Malawi and other African Countries where electricity connection rate is still very low.
In Malawi, only about 11 percent of the households are connected to electricity and the whole sub-Saharan Africa electricity connection rate stands at less than 11 percent.
Padoko Charger could benefit approximately over three million people in Malawi who spend money every time they charge their mobile phone and many others indirectly. It has also the potential to generate forex for the country through exports.
Currently mass production is what is remaining to take the charger to the market. Mixon has managed to accumulate raw materials for about 500 chargers but he says that this number is very small compared to the market as such funding as well as protecting the product will do Malawi the best.
Awards and Recognition
The Padoko Charger innovator won the first international award in 2014 at aGlobal Innovations Through Science and Technology (GIST TECH-I) competition finals organised by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and funded by the American department of state. He was voted number one in the world competition which was held in Morocco last year.
Locally, the University of Malawi honoured Mixon as the Outstanding student innovator during [email protected] Celebrations held at Kamuzu stadium on Saturday, 10th October, 2015.
He has also been invited to make presentations at various universities in Cameroon in November 2015 as a way of promoting innovations among African students in universities.
Malawi Communications Regulatory Authority (MACRA) sponsored three ICT innovators to showcase their talents at this global event.
The other innovators are Elijah Phiri of Auction Holdings Limited (AHL) who developed a warehouse management system and Samson Fiado, a fourth year student at Polytechnic who developed an accounting software called Easy books.
Macra’s legal affairs director James Kaphale said from Budapet that the regulators support to the innovators is in line with its mandate of promoting research in ICT.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :