Naija SDGs Hackathon: Osinbajo calls for innovation in sustainable farming, cleaner energy

By Chioma Obinagwam

As the curtain draws to an end on the 2021 Naija SDGs Hackathon, Nigeria’s Vice-president (VP), Prof. Yemi Osinbajo has urged participants at the event to be creative in developing solutions, mostly payments, around sustainable farming and cleaner energy.

Confiance News gathered from his opening remarks of the event, which was done virtually.
Hackathon is an event in which a large number of people meet to engage in collaborative computer programming.

Speaking on innovative solution, the VP said, “For example, we need to address the scope of sustainable farming. This has become crucial because we realise that now with deforestation and all the issues with farmers-herdsmen clashes and all of that, there’s a need for all of us to look more closely and how to be more creative with farming techniques.”

Osinbajo noted that opportunities abound in the solar energy space.

“The 5 million solar connection across the country, in response to the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, especially in areas where there are no electricity. There’s tremendous opportunities around solar energy. As we address climate change their creativity is needed here,” he said.

On his part, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of FMDQ Group and the chairman of FC4S Lagos, Mr. Bola Onadele Koko said that the whole idea behind the hackathon was to explore the the innovative capabilities of the youths in providing solutions to the SDGs by leveraging FinTech.

He said, “Consequently this hackathon will focus on the following objectives; harvesting the creative ability and dynamism of youths to lead the way in demonstrating the power of innovation and out of the box thinking… .”

The Chairman of the Nigeria Climate Innovation Centre (NCIC), Mr. Peter Bankole expressed satisfaction over the gravity of access to finance, particularly in the green economy in addition to the creative talents.

“It’s exciting to see that the creativity of young people are harnessed so that they can solve the most pressing problems we have, not just in Nigeria but across the continent,” he added.

Corroborating, the Managing Director (MD) of the Access Bank Group, Herbert Wigwe who was represented by his deputy, Mr. Roosevelt Ogbonna, harped on the importance of partnership in achieving the SDGs.

“So, partnerships are critical. We believe that skills as well as speed towards meeting those SDGs objectives will be achieved and accelerated if we decide to work together,” Ogbonna pointed.

On her part, Co-founder and Head of Innovation, AfricaHacks, Christine Dikongue, stated that the Naija SDGs Hackathon will focus on payment solutions, accountability, information and solution.

She noted that all the information needed by the participants are available on AfricaHacks platform.

The 2021 Naija SDGs Hackathon is the maiden event which has in attendance over 400 brainy youths.

The event which was flagged off by the VP on Thursday, March 26 will end on April 1, the grand finale, where winners will not only go home with cash rewards but will also be given technological incentives that will facilitate the implementation of the FinTech solutions.

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