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Twelve DRC students build ‘Mad Max’ car using waste materials

A group of sixth year mechanic studies students in the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo have defied the odds and built a car dubbed ‘Mad Max’ using only waste and scrap materials.

Anyone remember the classic television show Robot Wars? Twelve students from the Goma Institute of Technology and Industry, aged 15 to 20 years, have spent two years building a car solely from scrapped waste metal.

The students – together with teacher Mr. Muyalalo – decided to base the car on typical safari vehicles such as Land Rovers, and gave it the name ‘Mad Max’.

In order to meet the international vehicle standards, the car uses one litre of diesel for every seven kilometres travelled, and the group are certain that building similar prototypes would be possible through government help, as funding is the biggest obstacle holding their ambitions back.

The innovative youngsters promoted their work on social media to demonstrate how a car can be built without hefty funding, taking on interviews and showing off their final product.

Mr Muyalalo told local news reporters that the intention was to show ‘the Democratic Republic of Congo and the world that there are talents in the DRC and that the young people we supervise are able to make great things.’

‘They started with discarded elements and were able to turn them into something visible.’

The group wants the DRC government to financially boost its educational programmes and are seeking investment in order to start an automotive company – lead exclusively by Gen Zers.

In fact, one could argue that Africa’s future lies with its youngest generations, who are demonstrating innovation and ingenuity in order to achieve social transformation through projects such as this.

A young, growing population means more need for job opportunities, economic growth, and prosperity, all while improving on sustainability and net zero goals. According to the United Nations Population Fund it’s estimated that, by 2030, approximately 30 million young people will be in need of jobs in Africa.

Thanks to social media, more African Gen Zers are able to educate themselves independently and connect to others across the world. Empowerment through these platforms allows projects like ‘Mad Max’ to flourish, helping to promote new economic opportunities that are forward thinking.

More than 60% of youth employment is via start-ups and small operation projects, and investment in these areas could create more jobs for up-and-coming Gen Z workers.

The more innovative ideas like ‘Mad Max’ we see online, the better for Africa’s future prospects. Plus, it’s an exceptionally neat thing to have on your CV.


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