Two years after completing high school and without ever attending a mechanical class, a 23-Year-Old boy from Kwa Chokwe village in Tezo ward Kilifi County has surprised many, after making his own contraption – an automobile.
Tyson Chokwe, a second born in a family of three on Tuesday drove his ‘car’ named ‘Universal Version Four’ on Mombasa-Malindi Road as onlookers wowed at the unique contraption in amusement.
Speaking to the press at his home, Chokwe said he used a motorbike engine, modified it using different readily available metals and other metal rolls to assemble the contraption.
Much unique to Tyson’s creation are the spare parts used including building construction metals, chains, motorcycle engine and dashboard he used from waste materials to build the four-wheeled machine that he drives at an average speed of 40 kilometres per hour.
He said his car uses 2 litres of petrol fuel and has a capacity to carry four people.
The Mtondia Primary and Mashariki Secondary School alumni whose self-acquired mechanical expertise has amazed many, said he has never gotten any chance to further his studies in a related field, due to lack of school fees and career support.
“I wasn’t so good in school especially in theoretical work but fascinated with practical sciences. That did not mean the end of my ability despite scoring low grades in high school. I have not stepped into any mechanical class so I wonder what I would become if I am supported to further my studies,” Chokwe said.
He made a bicycle from bare waste materials at an age of 18 years in form two, an innovation that drove him to making another one of the kind, motorcycle which he named ‘Triple Zero’ and shocking of all the four-passenger capacity contraption which he said took him two and a half years to complete.
“My interest in making this started when I first made my bicycle from scratch and since it was successful, I decided to innovate my own semblance of a car so as to follow the dream I had when I was young,” he said.
Chokwe said he uses his innovation to make trips to the market and sometimes goes to the field for football training and even to the beach to relax and refresh his mind.
He said his dream was to own a car one day and now his future plan is to own assembling and manufacturing car factories so that even those cars which have been written off can be modified and used in a different way.
He called upon well-wishers and other leaders to support his innovation by enabling him further his studies adding, he has many ideas but finance is the main challenge.
“I am asking any good Samaritan to help me realize my dream of studying further so as to make more innovations,” Chokwe added.
According to his father Joseph Thomas Chokwe, he noticed his child’s efforts of becoming an innovator at an early age.
Joseph said while young, he could watch his son dismantle a bicycle and later assemble it, adding that there is a bicycle and a motorbike which he has modified all of which are in use.
He called upon well-wishers and other leaders in the county to assist him financially so that he can further his studies, adding that he sees in his son, a bright future.
“I have raised an innovative and brilliant son but I lack the money to enable him further his studies. Whoever will be touched by this story, please help my son with the financial support he needs to realize his dream,” Joseph said.
Mohamed Ahmed, one of the boda boda riders in Tezo said he was really motivated by Tyson’s modified ‘car’.
“I call upon any leaders out there who can help this young man to realize his full potential to come to his aid. He has never even gone to any driving lessons but if you give him any type of vehicle he will drive,” Ahmed observed.
Another motorbike rider Hezron Kitsao Mtawali who has witnessed Chokwe’s progress for a long time said many motorbikes are being serviced by Tyson.
“Tyson is our village star. If only he could get the kind of support he needs, then he would become an asset in our society and the country at large,” Hezron said, adding, he has shown the whole village that he has a talent which needs to be nurtured.
By Treeza Auma