Nigerian developer beats 750 contestants from 73 countries to win Dubai innovation contest

Abdulkarim Bashir, a Nigerian software developer has emerged the overall winner of a $10,000 cash prize at a Dubai startup technology and innovation contest after creating an anti-theft app.

The competition, which was orchestrated by Dubai’s World Trade Centre out of the need to inspire innovation among young owners of startups, witnessed the participation of a total of 750 contestants from 73 countries around the world.

On Wednesday, Bashir became a global winner in the ‘Artificial Intelligence’ category.

Isa Pantami, minister of communications and leader of the Nigerian delegation to the Gulf Information Technology Exhibition (GITEX) 2019, in a statement, congratulated the young winner for clinching the prize.

The minister, who was represented by Uwa Suleiman, his spokesperson, also commended the efforts of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) for sponsoring young innovators from around the country to the prestigious event.

He hinted that the involved bodies would continue to monitor and support the winner and other tech startups to ensure the deployment of their solutions in Nigeria.

“NITDA, as a regulator of the IT Sector, has continued to empower, promote and invest in young talent in the industry through the Office for ICT Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OIIE) in a bid to drive the President’s vision for technological advancement in Nigeria,” the statement read.

“This is a national success worthy of celebration as our efforts have begun yielding the desired results. The success is a clear testimony of the commitment of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration in promoting our youths and other Nigerians as prioritized by the Executive Orders 003 and 005.”

“We will continue to support and encourage Local Content Development and Promotion in our determination to transform our economy from a resource-based to a knowledge-based society”

Bahir’s application, christened Chiniki Guard, is an artificial intelligence security solution targeted at detecting and alerting business owners of security breaches in their shops.

The contest, in turn, is acclaimed as the biggest technology and innovation show in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia.