Thursday, November 7, 2019 9:36 pm
By Jethro Ibileke
Two members of the Young Friends of the Earth Nigeria, Daniel Wada and Japheth Okagbare, have successfully built a power bank, and a solar inverter they christened DanJaph.
The 21-year-old students were presented to the press on Thursday in Benin, Edo state, by the Executive Director of Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria, Dr. Godwin Uyi Ojo.
The Young Friends of the Earth Nigeria, which has as members hundreds of youths across Edo, Delta, Rivers and Bayelsa states, is a a body of young people showing concern on environmental challenges and try to proffer solutions to them.
Japheth who recently graduated from Ihogbe College, Benin, and Daniel, (a physically challenged and former student of Akenzua Secondary School, Benin, said their passion for electronics fired their desire and partnership.
“I have always wanted to make an helicopter, but whenever I try, it did not fly. So, when Daniel told me he made one, I became curious and I decided that this is the kind of person I want to mingle with. That was how we became friends.
“Daniel was actually learning how to repair air conditioner, while I was also learning how to repair electronics. Both of us have passion for reading about electronics very much, that passion was the motivation that fired us.
“I knew I’m very productive. People used to call me engineer, but I asked myself how am I an engineer when I’ve not invented anything,” Japheth said.
The duo disclosed that design and packaging were some of the challenges they had to grapple with before they finally came out with DanJaph power bank, adding that intensive online research led to the success of their invention.
Components of the power bank and inverter were sourced from abroad.
On his part, Daniel called for partnership and support from government and well-spirited Nigerians to enable them mass-produce and brand their products.
He said: “There are youths that are creative, but they don’t have the means to carry out whatever they want to do. l call on the government and the people to assist us to enable us produce it and spread it nationwide and neighbouring countries, because it could become a source of income to many youths and the country.
“There were cases whereby phones are stolen from where the owners are charging them at their neighbors’ houses. My uncle was a victim of that. But with this power bank, that is history. You can carry the power bank about or travel with it because it is very portable and very unique.”
Earlier while introducing the investors, the Executive Director of Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria, Dr. Ojo, said the organization and its partners “have for the past five years engaged the young people b developing entrepreneurial skills as a response to environmental degradation, climate change and the problem of young people unemployment.
He described Japheth as physically challenged but specially gifted.
“We are engaging the youths systematically to advance young people’s participation in the economic environment, thereby providing support and space for young innovators to flourish as alternative to oil and gas sector-dependence and become job creators the renewable energy sector to address the issue of environmental degradation and poverty.
“Although the product is at its initial stage, they are faced with routine challenges of young innovators and entrepreneurs with scarce resources. They have contributed in their own special way to reducing carbon emissions from fossil-bases conventional lighting system to address the problem of darkness due to frequent power outage in Nigeria,” Ojo added.