Youth Honored For Developing Unique Gloves

President Uhuru Kenyatta has honored Roy Alela, a 25-year-old engineering student from Nairobi University who invented smart gloves that auto-translate sign language into speech.

Speaking at the Gusii Stadium on Tuesday, October 20 during the 57th Mashujaa Day celebrations, Uhuru praised Alela as part of a new generation of Kenyan heroes.

Alela created the pair of gloves equipped with flex sensors in order to communicate with his niece who is deaf.

The sensors quantify the bend of the fingers and process the letter being signed.

The gloves are connected to an app via Bluetooth, which then vocalizes the letters and have an accuracy of 93 percent.

This innovation won Alela an award from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME).

The innovator said that his gloves can be customized into different superhero themes, thereby eliminating the stigma associated with deafness.

Roy Alela, the inventor of Signio- smart gloves that translate sign language into speech. Photo/Courtesy

The President also recognized two students from the Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) in his address.

Michael Malombo Mwaisakenyi and Ken Kioria Gicira alias “the Knights”, invented a high-tech automated weeding robot.

The robot which uses Artificial Intelligence (A.I) eliminates the need for the use of herbicides in controlling weeds.

The two beat nine other students from across nine European, Middle Eastern, and African countries to win Ksh. 828 prize money in March.

President had also lauded the efforts of a 800 youth stationed in Manyani, working in seminal programmes that include National Wide Airborne Geophysical Survey, the Geospatial Project, the Cyber Project, Drones, and the National Security Industrial Project.

Do you have a story you wish to tell? Oppressed at your work place? You have news? Tips? Exposé? You need to be heard??

The Kenyan Herald will carry your story. Share with us on email or or

Do you have a comment about this article?