Three young software developers have all walked away with prize money after winning the First edition of the MTN Yolo Hackathon challenge.
Rwibutso Germain, a young software developer from Kigali won the first prize of Rwf2,000,000, Yves Mutsinzi, the founder of Kigali Rides was the second and awarded Rwf1,200,000, while Joselyne Nisingizwe, the only lady in the competition and owner of Smart Ikigega, won Rwf800,000.
The winning project in the MTN Yolo Hackathon under a mobile application named “MensaH’’ attempts to provide innovative solutions to bridge the gap between customers and what they want to buy.
Powered by the MoMo API, MensaH, will allow Customers to scan any product they want from any shop, process the payment, and get the products delivered, both in Rwanda and abroad.
Speaking at the event, MTN Rwanda CEO, Mitwa Ng’ambi said that the MTN Yolo Hackathon was a great experience.
“Having launched the 1st edition, and meet such brilliant young developers is proof that we have the next digital giants,” she said and congratulated the top three winners as well as all the applicants who took part in this digital challenge.
The Minister of Youth and Culture, Rosemary Mbabazi, who attended the awarding ceremony, said that the youth empowerment agenda is a complex assignment that cannot be achieved without synergies and complementarity between the government and private sector actors.
The Minister lauded MTN’s contribution towards empowering talent in the industry and also advised winners to always follow their passion, work harder and smarter, do different things from what their competitors are doing.
She encouraged the winners to be mindful of providing good service to clients, and be people centric.
MTN Yolo Hackathon attracted more than 200 young entrepreneurs where at the first stage only 30 best projects were selected. The top five were then selected and attended a four-day Bootcamp for mentoring. Mentors came from various institutions including MTN and RISA.
RISA CEO, Innocent Muhizi and MTN CEO, Mitwa Ngambi were among the mentors.
The panel of judges was composed of Alex Ntare, the chief judge who is the CEO of ICT Chamber, Diana Gahima from RISA, Aline Akuzwe, a software developer, Philip Gakuru from MTN Fintech, and Ezer Ntabwoba from MTN IT Department.
MTN Yolo Hackathon is an annual youth challenge meant to address specific challenges in the society by developing digital channels.
It is an opportunity to create innovative financial applications and transactions using the Mobile Money API (MoMo) MTN platform.