A local self-taught innovator, Peterson Mwangi Muhoro, has accused the Kenya Industrial Property Institute (KIPI) of leaking his original patent to the international public domain.
Through his lawyer Davidson Warutere, Mr Muhoro, an inventor with a research centre at Ruring’u in Nyeri County, gave KIPI a 14 day notice to furnish him with the particulars of the case regarding the said patent with registration number KE/2011/000222.
According to the notice seen by the Nation and which is dated February 14, 2015 Mr Muhoro registered the patent through the said registration number.
But, the same has been leaked in unclear circumstances in Britain.
Speaking to Nation, Mr Warutere said that KIPI should therefore urgently intervene and assist their client, Mr Muhoro, to stop the continued leakage of his work.
“Noting that our client had formally requested KIPI’s good office to assist him when his patent first leaked in China and USA, we kindly but urgently demand their corporation in stopping the leakage of Kenya’s own innovations,” he said.
Further, Mr Warutere challenged KIPI to enlighten them of any possible constraints for their taking legal action against the infringement.
“Failure to do so within 14 days from the date hereof our client will be constrained to conclude that the institution is responsible to the prior leakages in Britain, USA and China where his patent has been applied for and subsequently validated,” said the Lawyer.
INVENTION RELATES TO LOCK
Meanwhile, according to KIPI’s Chief Legal Officer Eunice Njunguna, the abstract of the said utility model application of the invention disclosed therein relates to a lock whereas Mr Muhoro’s model application relates to a remote controlled switch.
She added that KIPI is, however, not mandated to enforce any intellectual property right on behalf of the rights holders whether in Kenya or other countries.
Ms Njuguna shifted blame to the inventor claiming it was his sole responsibility to enforce his rights through appropriate forums.
“It is the responsibility of a rights holder of any patented application to enforce their rights through the appropriate forums.
“If Mr Muhoro wants to enforce his utility model in Kenya, then he would have to file infringement proceedings before Industrial Property Tribunal once the utility model is registered in Kenya,” she said.
She added: “In the other countries where he claims his utility model has been stolen, he would have to seek advice from his lawyer on how to enforce his intellectual property rights.”
Mr Muhoro, a Form Four dropout, came into the limelight when local media termed his self-made driverless car application a local technology wonder during a demonstration in Nyeri in 2011.
The homemade gadget, he noted during a media interview, is able to start and switch off a car engine through a short message command from a cell phone without cellular network.