In the past few weeks since the ground breaking ceremony at Konza, I have met with six manufacturing outfits that are considering Africa as their new manufacturing destination. Two are well known chipset manufacturers. They not only want to manufacture their chipsets here but would want to build a supply chain by partnering with locals to manufacture hand-sets using their platform.
The four other visitors are emerging American and European companies that want to leverage on new opportunities arising in Africa’s burgeoning mobile market. Some of the questions they ask include whether we are doing any light electronic assembly work. Of course the answer is no but I try to say good things about Dr. Gachigi’s work at the University of Nairobi Fab Lab.
In my view we have collectively failed. We cannot get a donation from the MIT and seek for someone to take the risk by giving further aid. We cannot develop if we cannot take the risk ourselves.