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12-year-old Mbalu & Ohiaeri, 15, win 2021 SystemSpecs Children’s Day Essay Competition

12-year-old Chetachi Best Mbalu of Lagooz College, Iyana Ipaja Lagos and 15-year-old Uchenna Rita Ohiaeri of Queensland Academy, Okota, Lagos have emerged winners in the junior and senior categories respectively of the 2021 SystemSpecs Children’s Day Essay Competition.

Their entries trounced more than 2,000 others received from about 600 publicly-owned and private secondary schools across 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory.

The annual Children’s Day Essay Competition serves as an opportunity for Nigerian children aged 9 to 16 to share technology-led ideas capable of transforming specific aspects of the Nigerian state and thus stimulate their interest in technology for national development.

Also, Justin Chukwuemeka Nwachukwu, 12, from Babington Macaulay Junior Seminary, Ikorodu, Lagos and 10-year-old Praise Idaiye from Starlite College, Ibadan, Oyo State emerged first and second runners-up respectively in the junior category. While Wilfred Okoawo, 15, from New Fountain Secondary School, Amuwo Odofin, Lagos State and 16-year-old Nwachinemere Uzochukwu Mbaka from Maryland Comprehensive Secondary School, Maryland, Lagos emerged first and second runners-up respectively in the senior category.

Leading other young Nigerians across the country as frontliners in advanced, solution-based thinking, the bright youngsters who emerged first in each category will each receive a high capacity laptop, a topnotch headphone, monthly 10 gigabyte data for one year, branded travel suite case, a trendy hoodie, a thermal flask and school bag. The first runners-up will receive a high capacity laptop, a topnotch headphone, monthly 5 gigabyte data for one year, a trendy hoodie, a thermal flask and school bag.

Meanwhile, New Fountain Secondary School, Amuwo Odofin, Lagos, emerged winner of in the School’s award in the senior category as it had the highest points among the top 10 participants and will get 15 high-capacity laptop computers. The school award of 10 high-capacity laptop computers for the junior category goes to Lagooz School Lagos which also produced the category winner with the highest points.

In its second year and themed “Building a more Secure Nigeria using Technology”, the competition received dazzling thoughts written in maximum of 1ooo and 1500 words respectively for the junior and senior categories respectively of how Nigeria can explore technology to tackle the menace of insecurity confronting her.

“At SystemSpecs, we are firm believers in the Nigeria project and strongly advocate that young Nigerians be given a chance to make input into issues of strategic national importance. Our annual essay competition helps us to feel the pulse of the younger generation while creating the consciousness that they have a role to play in national progress,” said Deremi Atanda, SystemSpecs’ Executive Director in charge of corporate strategy.

Atanda re-affirmed SystemSpecs’ commitment to helping brilliant young Nigerians who participated in the competition and many others to translate their ideas to reality through its corporate social responsibility which is geared towards advancing capacity development for national growth at all levels. Atanda also acknowledged the support received from leading bodies within Nigeria’s education sector for the 2021 competition, most notably the National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS).

The judging process that produced the winners was thorough, as all entries were stripped of the identities of the entrant and sent round to judges for multiple assessments, after which top entries were shortlisted and independently reviewed by the panel of judges.

Speaking on behalf of the judges, Adedoyin Jaiyesimi, Chief Communications Consultant at The Comms Avenue, noted that the quality of the essays reflected the quality of Nigeria’s current educational system.

“While majority of the entries reflected good thinking and impressive research, a number also suggested that participants did not pay enough attention to instructions and also lacked experienced guidance.

“Nonetheless, on behalf of other distinguished members of the panel of judges this year, I commend everyone who sent in an entry expressing their thoughts on the Nigerian project, especially how technology could be leveraged to return the country to a fully secure and peaceful state.”

Jaiyesimi added that the judges, who themselves are influencers of national policies, would work with SystemSpecs to ensure that the bright ideas expressed in the essays are curated for implementation exploring different partnership models.

The 2021 Children’s Day Essay Competition is the second in the series and is part of SystemSpecs’ overall drive to contribute to capacity development towards the technological advancement of Nigeria.

SystemSpecs, providers of innovative solutions – Remita, Paylink and HumanManager, has remained at the forefront of providing financial, human capital and ecommerce technology solutions for individuals, businesses and government in Nigeria and the African continent.