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Nigeria grabs $10,000 innovation prize at GITEX

BY Emmanuel Elebeke

Nigeria has emerged winner in the FutureStars challenge held at the ongoing GITEX Technology Week in Dubai, UAE.

Nigeria grabs $10,000 innovation prize at GITEX

The prize was won by one of the Nigerian Start-Ups,  Abdulhakim Bashir, the CEO/Founder of CHINIKI GUARD meant to tackle the menace of shoplifting.

CHINIKI GUARD is a solution that has the capacity to detect shoplifting and provides real analysis for shoplifting on activities going in a shop. It analyses the information from CCTV camera using AI. It reports instantly via a connected video app.  

It was developed in a manner whereby you can get into App, get a consultant and he will give you a prescription to carry out a test, and then send you to a doctor who will give prescription for treatment. The idea is to ease all the processes of moving to the hospital from your house or office. The prize is worth $10,000.

According to Bashir, CHINIKI GUARD has the capacity to detect shoplifting and provides real analysis for shop lifting on activities going in a shop. It analyse the information from CCTV camera using AI. It reports instantly via a connected video app.  
 
Chiniki GUARD had alongside with another Nigerian Innovation, 247MEDIC by Stephen Osawaru emerged semi-finalists on Monday on the Supernova stage out of 108 contestants that participated in the innovation challenge.

Meanwhile, the overall winner in the contest was Jose Rubinger of Brazil, the CEO and Co-Founder of Key2Enabler Assistive Technology for assisting disable persons to write and type with keyboard. He is also a co-founder US/Brazil Start-Ups. He went home with $100,000.

Commenting on the development, Minister of Communications, Dr. Isa Pantami had described the development as victory for Nigeria and attestation to the hard work and effort of government to make digital transformation in Nigeria a reality.The minister reiterated his stance on increased support for start-ups and called on relevant agencies to give them the necessary support.

‘‘The start-ups need seed funding and enforcement to get to the level their ought to be. Nigerians are so much addicted to foreign products by neglecting our own products and urged that we have to use the GITEX experience to upgrade our systems.

He said research and development is critical but can only be relevant when they are turned into products and services.

‘‘I am happy to announce to you that two of our start-ups that came for this GITEX have emerged as semi-finalists. Our youths in Nigeria have crazy and disruptive ideas. What they need is mentorship. Mentorship is very critical, as it helps to avoid a lot of mistakes. Our agencies must improve their intervention for start-ups.

‘‘Research and development is critical but only if we identify the areas we need them. We must take the theories to practical. Whenever we are taking on any research, let us make sure the research as a policy is implemented,’’ he said.

He called on relevant agencies to mentor the Start-ups to enable them to improve on their knowledge.
In his own remarks, the Director General of NITDA, Rashifu Inuwa said NITDA sponsor Start-ups every year to GITEX to expose them to global reality and share experience with their peers in line with the agency’s mandate  to digitize the country.

Nigeria sponsored 10 Start-up to the global event. He said the performance of the Nigerian representatives was an attestation to the fact that Nigeria has youths that can impact the world with innovative ideas.

‘‘We came up with about 10 Start-Ups to this exhibition. Two out of the ten that participated in the semifinal pitch. This show our Start-Ups have innovative ideas and they have ideas that can impact lives globally.

‘‘What they need is the right environment and mentorship for them to achieve what they want to achieve. A lot of start-ups are coming on in Lagos, the work we have been doing have started manifesting.

‘‘Before oil was major contributor to GDP but now ICT has taken over with 13.6 percent as against 8% of oil and gas. To achieve digital transformation, we need to consider the technology, the process and the people’’.’

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