Crop Scientists at the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) have unveiled a simple and affordable test kit for detecting a naturally occurring aflotoxin causing organism whose poisoning has killed many people in Kenya and other parts of Africa in recent past.
On one sunny morning two years ago, Government Chemists staff were confronted with a scene that still evokes laughter and disappointment to this moment. At the entrance, a visibly angry man paraded 10 children all in school uniforms. The confused and frightened children looked at the men and women in white coats going about their business at the Chemist with a lot of fear, not knowing what the man they have known for years as their father was up to.
James (not his real name) had achieved what every man would wish to gain in life. He had a beautiful
wife, a successful career, and four healthy children – three sons and a daughter - who were the source of his inspiration every morning he woke-up. On weekends, he would take them for an outing, and slowly found himself emotionally attached to his two older sons – 13-year-old John (not his real name) and 11-year-old Peter (not his real
name). As time went by, his fortunes continued to improve. And is the case with some men, he decided to marry a second wife. At first, everything was blissful as they enjoyed their young marriage.
But things started to change around 2002 when the second wife, after two years of marriage, could not conceive. For James, the problem lay with her since he was a proud father of four from his first marriage.
Fifty percent of Kenyan men who go for paternity testing at the Government Chemist turn out not to be the real fathers of the children they have invested in both emotionally and financially.
One of the bees, stingless honey bee, which was recently discovered in Kakamega forest by the scientist, Mary Gikungu, is now big-time business for bee farmers in Brazil and India because of its ability to make exceedingly good medicinal honey.
In Brazil and some Asian countries, the bee, scientifically known as Meliponula, makes honey which is said to be highly prized and well sought after for its ability to cure conditions ranging from male impotence to baldness.
The 24-hour-service, the first of its kind in East and Central Africa, offers information not only in English and Kiswahili, but also in vernacular languages like Kikuyu, Kamba, Luhya and Luo.