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23-Year-Old Nigerien Student, Salissou Hassane, Wins Miss Geek Africa 2018

Miss Salissou Hassane Yari Latifa, a 23-year old University student from Niger, is Miss Geek Africa 2018, crowned at the Transform Africa Summit 2018 that took place in Kigali, Rwanda this week.

The competition is designed to inspire African girls into Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) fields and interest them to be part of solving the continent’s challenges using technology.

Salissou developed a mobile phone application called ‘Saro App’ that allows people to alert emergency services and inform them of the itinerary to take to reach the location. It also allows emergency services to send crucial practical first-aid information before they get there.

She said her App could be handy to emergency services and reduce the response time in case of an accident. Patience Mutesi, one of the judges said the winning App was well thought through and presented an innovative App as a quick response to road accidents, addressing a challenge emanating from a growing middle-class in Africa.

As the winner beating nine other potential Apps, Salissou walked away with a Rwf3 million cash prize and a travel ticket to an international conference, courtesy of Smart Africa.

Ndeye Fatou Mboup, from Senegal, was the first runner-up. She created a fully smart granary that could help farmers and small-scale traders in the region preserve vegetables and fruits.

The other three finalists were all Rwandans. Christelle Mazimpaka was the second runner-up of the competition and was given Rwf1 million. She highlighted the challenge of matching small businesses in Africa with small investors and proposed a web platform and mobile App, the ISI Circles, where business plans and models can be shared.

Sylvie Mahoro, who showcased a translation App that would enhance communication, was the third runner-up. Alida Umurungi was the fourth runner-up.

Miss Geek Africa, is only in its second year after running for three years as a country competition named Miss Geek Rwanda. It is organized by Girls in Rwanda, women professionals in STEM, and was expanded beyond Rwanda after a partnership with Smart Africa and now includes the whole continent. This year the competition attracted over 200 applicants.

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