Prior to the final announcement at a special gala ceremony on 23 June 2016 at the Gaborone International Conference Centre (GICC), the expert panel of IPA deliberated through live pitching sessions and one-on-ones with each nominee to select the top three winners. One nominee related to agriculture:
The Tryctor is Femi’s innovation – a mini tractor modelled on the motorcycle. By attaching various farming implements, it can carry out similar operations as a conventional tractor to a smaller scale. Farming for most small scale farmers in the continent is tough, laborious and characterized by low productivity. Small scale farmers are constrained by the costs involved in switching to mechanized agriculture and use of heavy equipment. However, through inspired alterations to a motorcycle’s engine, gearing system and chassis, this innovation has made it possible to mechanize agriculture in Africa for small scale farmers in a way that was previously inaccessible.
Additionally, the Tryctor is easy to use and cheaper to maintain as 60% of its parts and components are locally sourced. The IPA judges were captivated by the clever adaptation of a motorized solution that is ubiquitous in Africa, largely for transportation to a solution for mechanized farming for small scale farmers.