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Stephen Wamukota: Nine year-old gets State commendation for unique handwashing machine

Stephen Wamukota, the nine-year-old boy who designed a unique machine for washing hands has received National Honors on Monday.

He is among 68 people who were conferred The Presidential Order of Service, Uzalendo Award on Monday.

President Uhuru Kenyatta said the award is in recognition of distinguished and outstanding service to Kenya in helping steer the country through the coronavirus pandemic.

Wamukota, who lives in Bungoma County, hit the headlines in April this year after he came up with a hand washing facility that could be used without touching it.

To use the machine, one has to step on a pedal that releases the soap and water.

During an interview with the Daily Nation, he said that he had seen people struggling to wash their hands comfortably with no fear of contracting coronavirus.

The Grade Three pupil from Mukwa Primary School revealed that the machine had cost him KSh3,000 to construct.

He narrated how he started putting the machine together on his own but could not complete it.

“I had the idea of developing this machine and after I started, I ran out of materials and approached my father who assisted me complete it,” the young Wamukota said as quoted by the Daily Nation.

His father James Wamukota repairs radios and phones. He intimated that his son has always had a creative mind and residents have been flocking their home to see the unique gadget.

The creative boy who has also been interviewed by the BBC said he desires to be an engineer in future.

On 15 May, Bungoma Governor Wycliffe Wangamati and area Senator Cleophas Malala said they would scout for a special school for Wamukota to nurture his creativity. 

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