(By Masuzyo Chakwe and Oliver Chisenga)
UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema says Zambia is not short of brains and manpower, but of leadership to inspire and support such innovations for the betterment of all citizens.
Hichilema has congratulated the University of Zambia management, particularly the School of Engineering lecturer and researcher Dr Sam Sichilalu, for developing an innovation designed to generate fuel from polymer waste such as discarded tyres, plastic, and rubber.
“We have been informed that the innovation called ‘polyfuel prototype’ converts waste tyres/plastic materials into high grade polyfuel (industrial fuel) which is a hydrocarbon mixture of petrol, diesel and kerosene with methane vapour,” he stated.
“We understand the innovation is aimed at contributing to improved sanitation, cheaper energy, reduction on deforestation, improved income for vulnerable women waste material collectors and a climate change mitigation on all non-biodegradable products. We are so excited because such innovation, research and development falls in what we believe can be done in an efficiently funded education system. We have always said Zambia is not short of brains and manpower, but it’s short of leadership to inspire and support such innovations for the betterment of our citizens.”
He stated that if well supported and implemented at large scale, such innovations could immensely contribute in addressing the current high cost of fuel in the country and generate employment opportunities for Zambia, especially youth and women.
“Congratulations once more to the entire team and please let’s hear more of such positive news from our country,” said Hichilema.
And University of Zambia spokesperson
Brenda Bukowa stated that Dr Sichilalu declared that the polyfuel innovation would not only provide a cheap source of energy, but would also solve the problem of disposal of waste tires/plastic thereby contribute to the control of environmental pollution and reduce dependence on fossil fuels or petroleum.
Dr Sichilalu said that the polyfuel produced was safe to be used as industrial fuel in electric generators, boilers, diesel pumps, furnaces, and in cars.
Bukowa added that Dr Sichilalu would be exhibiting his innovation at the 93rd Agriculture and Commercial Show in Lusaka.
“Please, visit the University of Zambia stand for this and more innovations that UNZA will be showcasing from 31st July 2019 to 5th August 2019,” stated Bukowa.