Today, September 1, 2020, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), unveiled three startups as the winners of its COVID-19 Hackathon.
The startups are:
- CyberFleet Integrated Limited;
- Prime E-Health and
- Elizade University Team.
The Commission said the selection of the three companies followed a careful and painstaking evaluation of 282 entries in the COVID-19 Virtual Hackathon from digital innovation Startups and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) by an evaluation committee set up by the NCC.
The winners’ focus
1. Cyberfleet built KlasConnect as all-in-one revolutionary learning management platform for educational institutions.
KlasConnect provides educational institutions with a web portal that amongst other things, enables registering for courses, receiving lectures, delivering assignments, creating and executing tasks.
2. Primed E-Health, as a leading Health IT company involved in providing and implementing the latest trends in Health technology developed SmartClinic.
They are currently upgrading the EMR solutions for FCT Hospitals (Maitama, Asokoro, Gwarinpa and Bwari General hospitals.
The team saw a need; as with the rapid spread of the Corona Virus, the restrictions of people to their homes and fear of overcrowding healthcare facilities, Prime e-Health are developing a mobile and web solution that links a Patient based mobile health App (Smartclinic Mobile) with a Hospital based Hospital information management system (Smartclinic Hospital).
The solution tends to provide as an immediate response to the multitude of people requiring access to healthcare but locked or isolated at home.
3. Elizade University Team developed what they called ‘Automated Temperature Scanner with Contact Tracing Capability’.
The team believes that in order to contain and control the spread of COVID -19 pandemic and other temperature-related infections such as Ebola and Lasa fever; Contact tracing is vital.
Thus, the proposed device is aimed at assisting in automatic temperature screening and contact tracing of persons with body temperature above the normal for human beings.
13. Congratulations to our Winners.— ncc.gov.ng (@NgComCommission) September 1, 2020
1. Messers Primed E-Health
2. Messers Cyberfleet Integrated Limited
3. Messers Elizade University pic.twitter.com/aJ1qMA2R8E
Speaking at the presentation ceremony held at the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) Corporate Headquarters, Abuja, the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, said: “we need to produce what we need and consume what we produce, any country that remains a consumer will find it difficult to succeed”.
The Minister stressed that there is a need for us as a country to be bold enough in adopting indigenous solutions, consuming them and paying less attention to imported goods.
According to Pantami, ICT innovations do not discriminate. The COVID-19 pandemic has become one in which the World is united in finding a solution. Any digital solution to addressing any aspect of the challenges posed by the pandemic is welcome.
Pantami also expressed optimism that the innovations will be bankable and marketable to the local, national and international market places.
Also speaking, the Executive Vice Chairman, Nigerian Communications Commission, Prof. Umar Danbatta, said the hackathon borne out of the Minister’s challenge to the Commission, to evolve a digital solution to the current Covid-19 pandemic which has continued to terrorize the entire humanity.
In his words, “It is evident that the entire globe is challenged about how best to tackle this pandemic. Telecommunications/ICTs have taken the centre 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 have made people across the globe to rely on technology for information, for social distancing, and working from home.
On the hackathon, he said “We had, in inviting submissions for this innovative digital solution to Covid-19 pandemic, sought novel ideas or solution to address the needs of health workers and other frontline health professionals including individuals in isolation centres, or provide help for relevant agencies involved in tracking and tracing the spread of the virus as well as support or facilitation of other preventive measures.
“We will all witness what digital solutions that today’s winners are going to bring to the table. Each of the Startups, or tech-hubs with promising innovative digital solutions against the pandemic will receive a grant of N3M (Three Million Naira Only).
The Director of Research and Development at NCC, Dr Henry Nkemadu, while making his opening remarks noted that the NCC Virtual Hackathon 2020, in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic, to challenge Nigerian Startups, Technology Hubs and Innovation Digital SMEs to come up with adaptable digital solutions for addressing the present and future impacts of Pandemic and Epidemic diseases in Nigeria.
According to Nkemadu, the Hackathon was designed to engage Startups to compete in a healthy manner in such a way as to improve our innovativeness.
Speaking further, Nkemadu said, “Technology has provided solutions to the challenge of weak public systems by providing solutions to most of the challenges in education, health, financial, agric, sectors etc.”
“When we advertised and called for entries to the Hackathon, a total of 298 submissions were received from Startups. After the first and second level preliminary assessments based on the pre-established selection criteria, 56 of the Startups qualified for the final stage of the Evaluation Processes.”
“A very competent team of Evaluators drawn from relevant Departments in the Commission worked assiduously to recognize excellence and select groundbreaking innovative solutions from Startups and Tech Hubs capable of mitigating the challenges posed by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country and beyond.”
“Out of the fifty six (56) Solutions from different Startups that participated in the Virtual Hackathon, three (3) winning solutions were identified through a painstaking evaluation process that threw up the overall first, second and third bests Startups with the most promising and adaptable solutions,” Nkemadu said.