The President was to come to Kabiruini last week to grace this year’s Agricultural Society of Kenya show for the Central Region. A good number of Kimathi students – especially freshers and the third years who have only spent one year in Kimathi – don’t know where Kabiruini is. It’s just less than a hundred meters beyond Boma and there’s also a really good stadium in there. Kabiruini is always the venue where the ASK show is held every year in Kimathi.
Sh. 250, that’s the amount an adult was required to pay to get into the show, which started on Wednesday last week and ended on Saturday. And yes, even campus students are adults, contrary to what our behavior sometimes suggests. When you are really broke and intend to get the most out of your money, sh. 250 can feed you for five days. You just have to eat breakfast in the mess @15 and githeri for lunch and supper @15. So sh. 250 can be a lot of money, depending on how broke you are. Was the Kabiruni show worth spending sh. 250 on?
First of all, the President didn’t show up; which was a disappointment to some of us who were expecting to get a chance to catch a glimpse of the President. However, the Nyeri Governor: Mutahi Kahiga and the Agriculture CS: Mwangi Kiunjuri, attended the event.
Was there really anything genuinely interesting about the show? That depends on you. If you are an Agriculture enthusiast, then the show had a lot to offer in terms of the latest agricultural innovations and tips on how to carry out smart and better farming.
For example, the Smart Shamba Irrigation project by students from our own DeKUT is an innovation that lets you monitor your farm’s irrigation from miles away. Smart Shamba collects data about moisture, humidity and temperature levels from your farm and sends it to your phone. It also enables you to turn water pumps on and off and make informed irrigation decisions from anywhere in the world. Sweet, right? Imagine taking such an idea to the folks back in your village. If you implement it for them, it will probably be much easier to get them to vote you in as MCA, now that jobs are extremely scarce for graduates.
Also, if you love information just for the sake of it, then the show was a dream. There was so much to learn. All the major institutions and organizations had a stand where you could ask any question. For example, in the Judiciary stand, I found a very nice lady. She looked at me and assumed that my friends get arrested a lot and she advised me on the procedures for placing bonds and bails. She also found it necessary to explain the history of the Judiciary in Kenya to me. Did you know that in the pre-colonial times, in a certain tribe, if you were found guilty, you would be put into a drum and rolled downhill? Do you also know that you could be found guilty by losing in a game of chance? For example, the way we play cards nowadays, if you are the first to be eliminated among a group of suspects, you are automatically declared guilty.
Institutions and organizations that were present at the show include: Government institutions: Kenya Forestry Service, Kenya Prisons, Kenya Wildlife Service, micro finance organizations like Biashara Sacco & Kenya Women Finance Trust, banks like Equity, government service providers like Nyewasco and Mawasco, universities like DeKUT and JKUAT, polytechnics like Nyeri Poly.
From DeKUT, we had several innovations being showcased. Mkulima Young, one of them, is a social enterprise whose main aim is to make farming look attractive to the youth. By youth, they are also referring to campus students like you who think that farming somehow lowers your dignity. The jobs out there are getting increasingly scarce so agriculture may be the thing that will make you rich. To get ideas on that, head over to www.mkulimayoung.com and see what they are doing about the youth and farming. Their website and app also connects buyers and sellers of agricultural produce and agro-products.
Another project from DeKUT that was on display in the show involved monitoring air quality and using the data collected to predict air quality metrics in future. The prediction is done using artificial intelligence techniques: machine learning and data analytics.
Another innovation, Plant Signal, which is an application for detecting pests and diseases on plants, was also featured. It especially excited the CS, Mwangi Kiunjuri. To learn more about Plant Signal, go to play store and download their app.
There were also a lot of food joints selling nyama choma, chips, real food e.t.c I don’t know if riding merry go rounds and fake trains is for you but such activities were also available. There was a place for dunda during the day.
Could you be interested in buying a guitar for sh.3000 or know someone who could be interested? To learn more, send an email to Peter at email@example.com
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