One of my former lecturers once told me that the Constitution was arranged in order of importance and I tended to agree with him.

“Chapter one: sovereignty of the people and supremacy of this constitution’’ being the most important chapter in the constitution, as this Republic is built on our Sovereignty as Kenyans first then as every tribal, political and economic groupings that we impose upon ourselves “All sovereign power belongs to the people of Kenya and shall be exercised only in accordance with this Constitution” being the most important statement in the chapter. The second in importance is “Chapter two: The Republic” whose territory we are expected to protect as citizenry or government. “Chapter three: Citizenship” defines what makes us Kenyans first before we go on to become Dujis Mijikenda and Borana. “Chapter four: The Bill Of Rights” outlines what former governments ignored as the atrocities we witnessed before independence were being repeated seemingly forgetting what we went through to become the independent republic we are now. And again Part 2 is also arranged in order of importance with the most basic and most fundamental right, the right to life being top of the pile.
From there henceforth the rest of the constitution tries to deal with the various issues that have been considered contentious for a long time. This is not to say that they are any less important, but what defines this beautiful country and its people are found in these 4 chapters. The executive which comes way down in Chapter 9 shows you how much, the minds behind the constitution look at one of the unholy trinity that is the government. So before we go out to ‘fight’ for our ‘man’ or ‘woman’ ask yourself how important that is.
As scientists we have however not been left behind in this new dispensation and our importance is outlined in a small article in Chapter 2. Chapter 2 article 11 states:
(1) This Constitution recognises culture as the foundation of the nation and as the cumulative civilization of the Kenyan people and nation.
(2)The State shall—
a. Promote all forms of national and cultural expression through literature, the arts, traditional celebrations, science, communication, information, mass media, publication, libraries and other cultural heritage;
b. Recognise the role of science and indigenous technologies in the development of the nation; and
c. Promote the intellectual property rights of the people of Kenya.
(3)Parliament shall enact legislation to-
a. Ensure that communities receive compensation or royalties for the use of their cultures and cultural heritage; and
b. Recognise and protect the ownership of indigenous seeds and plant varieties, their genetic and diverse characteristics and their use by the communities of Kenya.
From that plane made of a car engine to the banana tissue culture we have to protect what we invent.

Universities and research institutions spend a lot of money in research and the findings they obtain are sometimes taken by foreigners changed and published as original works by them without recognising any of our scientists’ effort. Most of our geological maps and reports were done by foreigners from as far as the 1890’s when Gregory, J. W. who wrote about “Contributions to the Physical Geography of British East Africa” in 1894 and a follow up on “the Geology of Mt Kenya” back in 1900. Of importance is that these old reports all mentioned something about some of these important minerals that we are rushing to claim ‘we’ve discovered’. All it needed was someone to look at the fine print and that’s why we have so many foreigners looking for these minerals instead of our local scientists. The blame is obviously on us as geologists I must admit. Our focus must thus shift from just writing research papers for publishing in important foreign journals for international recognition and to the dirt that these important minerals and resources are hidden. Going by recent major findings were getting to where we need to be. Of particular praise should be those in the geothermal fields. The government has tried so hard to ensure that this resource is fully Kenyan with finance being the only foreign input into the various geothermal projects. The new constitution provides us with an opportunity for recognition as well as innovation.
As Kenyans we have fabulous ideas. From M-pesa to Ushahidi on the global scale to the very local solar lamps and energy saving stoves we are very much an innovative population.
 When the kiondo was patented by the Japanese it became clear that something had to be done to prevent such a scenario occurring again. Our local universities should be at the forefront of doing this with all the creative ideas being churned out by its students but they should also ensure that they recognise the effort of the creators and adequate compensation is necessary to them. Technology cannot be separated from science as stated in the constitution and both should go hand in hand as this is the only way the science family proves its viability to the rest of the world.