Meet the geologist who loves Kenya

April 30, 2009 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 30 – When Daniel Ichang’i was named as chairman of a selection panel for the Truth Justice and Reconciliation Commission, many wondered who he was.

The bespectacled scholar lectures at the Geological department of the University of Nairobi (UON) Chiromo campus.  He also heads the Association of Professional Societies of East Africa (APSEA).

Capital News recently caught up with the Nairobi University don and he opened up regarding his childhood, schooling and his appointment to the selection panel.

Born 55 years ago, Mr Ichang’i started his schooling in 1962 in Muranga, later joining Nyeri Primary school until 1968. He went to Alliance High school for his O and A-levels which he completed in 1974.

After a one-year stint at Kenya Polytechnic, the ambitious young man joined the University of Nairobi where he graduated with a first class honours Bachelor of Science (Bsc) degree in Geology and Chemistry in 1979. He later joined the ministry of water for a short stint before heading back to the University of Nairobi for a Masters degree in Geology. Afterwards he went to Canada where he got his Doctorate in 1991.

Mr Ichang’i has worked for long at the University of Nairobi. Just before completing his master’s degree, he was employed in the Geology department to work as a graduate assistant in 1982. He has been a lecturer at the university teaching the geology of mineral deposits for the past 27 years. He joined the Geological Society of Kenya (GSK) becoming the vice-chairman.

One of his hobbies includes playing hockey. He was a competitive player in high school and in his university days. He also loves traveling the length and breadth of the country and in his own words describes Kenya as having a very high potential of unexplored resources. It is this desire to travel that sparked up his interest in Geology and subsequently his career path.

Like most people, while growing up his life was influenced by a role model who in this case was an evangelist at his church. He spent a great deal of his time with the man of the cloth and as he reminisces on the time they spent together, his eyes take up that misty look as he is filled with nostalgia.

According to him this role model played a crucial role in modeling the path that his life took. Another inspirational figure that he remembers is J.M Kariuki whose way of life influenced him to widen his scope of understanding of other Kenyans.


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