Six Nigerian entrepreneurs have joined their counterparts across the continent to compete for the coveted 2021 Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation.
The prize, which was first launched in 2014, celebrates innovative engineers across Africa.
The chosen Nigerians are Elohor Thomas, Faith Adesemowo; Jacob Azundah; Olugbenga Olufemi Olubanjo; Taofeek Olalekan; and Yusuf Bilesanmi.
The entrepreneurs selected from other African countries are Armelle Sidje (Cameroon); Indira Tsengiwe (South Africa); Marie Ndieguene (Senegal); Eyram Amedzor (Ghana); Noël N’guessan (Côte d’Ivoire).
Others are: Juka Fatou Darboe (The Gambia); Atish Shah (Tanzania); Pazion Cherinet (Ethiopia); George Boateng (Ghana); and Tshepo Mangoele (South Africa).
Emma Wade Smith, trade commissioner for Africa at the UK department for international trade, said: “The range of innovations and innovators in this year’s shortlist offer an insight into Africa’s extraordinary diversity and talent”.
“It illustrates the importance we all place on nurturing and supporting Africa’s self-starters to create and scale sustainable and inclusive products and services that will help us rebuild our economies to be greener, cleaner and more resilient.
“The Africa Prize helps to accelerate entrepreneurial capacity and ecosystems. I am certain we will see many of these inventions go on to create and sustain jobs and benefit our societies, as so many of the previous participants in the Africa prize have done.”
The 2021 shortlist include innovations that addresses most of the United Nation’s sustainable development goals (SDGs) including reducing waste, improving healthcare efficiency, and a range of digital solutions to improve business productivity.
The 16 shortlisted candidates consisting of six female entrepreneurs will compete for £25,000 star prize, while three runners-up of the event will go home with £10,000 each.
In 2017, Nigeria’s Godwin Benson won the prize for developing Tuteria, an online platform that connects people seeking to learn “anything” with verified local experts who can teach them what they want to learn, as well as ensuring safety, accountability and quality learning delivery.