KlasConnect, SmartClinic and Elizade University Team have been revealed as the winners of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) COVID-19 Virtual Hackathon Challenge.
Each of the teams were awarded a sum of N3 million in solution research grants after emerging the top three winners out of 56 startup finalists that participated in the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) COVID-19 Virtual Hackathon Challenge.
The cash prizes were presented to each startup at the NCC Launch/Award Ceremony for Recipients of Covid-19 Solution Research Grant held today.
In attendance, were the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Pantami, the Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (EVC/CEO) of the Nigerian Communications Commission, Prof Umar Garba Danbatta, the Director, Research and Development, NCC, Dr Henry Nkemadu, the Chairman, Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria (ALTON), Engr. Gbenga Adebayo and other dignitaries.
Professor Danbatta who delivered the opening remarks said; “This challenge is not misplaced, given that it is in tandem with the 8-pillars of theNational Digital Economy Policy and Strategy 2020-2030, with the Honorable Minister as the Pilot.:
“It is evident that the entire globe is challenged about how best to tackle this pandemic. Telecommunications/ICTs have taken the center stage in the provision or advancement of solutions.
In the quest of the International Finance Corporation, IFC, to appraise the impact or role that telecommunications/ICTs plays in addressing this COVID-19 pandemic, IFC noted that more than any other event in human history, the critical importance that telecommunications infrastructure plays in keeping businesses, governments, and societies connected and running as the economic and social disruptions caused by the pandemic has made people across the globe to rely on technology for information, for social distancing, and working from home.
Working from home has become a new normal made possible by ICTs. Innovations in telecommunications has to a large extent, provided the best link for humanity to share available solutions in navigating the challenges of the pandemic.” he added.
He reiterated the NCC’s commitment to the promotion of Nigeria’s digital economy, citing the establishment of the Department of Digital economy in the Commission.
About The Winners
KlasConnect is an edtech startup that provides academic institutions with an online gateway which enables students to learn remotely and execute tasks such as course registration, receiving real-time lectures and submitting assignments.
Founded by Bello Adesoji, the e-learning platform seeks to eliminate difficulties in digital learning through its centralised system.
SmartClinic is a healthtech startup which plans to provide medical technologies through its upgraded Electronic Medical Records (EMR) solutions for hospitals and its already designed SmartClinic Patient Mobile App. The company integrated the COVID-19 self-assessment feature which allows individuals to run basic tests and consult with doctors.
The Elizade University Team completed the final three and offers a device that traces and monitors potentially infected people via temperature tests which may or may not require a means of identification.
At the end of the award ceremony, each startup was each given a cash prize of N3 million by the NCC as winners of the COVID-19 Virtual Hackathon.
Speaking on the award in his keynote address, the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Pantami stated, “My advice to the three(3) winners is to tell you that when you come up with your startup you need mentorship.”
“We need to work hard on how to mentor our startups. It goes beyond awarding a prize to them,” he continued.
The Minister implored the startups to work very hard and further explained that the success of any startup relies on three things: Willingness to invent and innovate, long term thinking and customer impression.
Each startup can now leverage the N3 million research grant to widen their knowledge base via in-depth research and subsequently improve their digital content and reach in Nigeria.