Nigeria wins World Bank’s Youth Development Initiative

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FOR the second successive year, Nigeria has won the Ideas for Action initiative, a youth competition on financing for development, which is yearly organised by the World Bank Group in collaboration with the Zicklin Center for Business Ethics Research.

Nigeria’s winning proposal, “Kitovu”, came out tops from among 743 proposals from 118 countries, while Uganda’s proposal of “Gifted Hands” and India’s proposal of “Agratam” were adjudged first and second runner ups in this year’s competition.

The World Bank’s Senior Vice President (The 2030 Development Agenda), Mahmoud Mohieldin, announced the results of the 2017 Ideas for Action initiative on Tuesday in Washington, during the annual meetings of World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.

Mohieldin disclosed that the winners were selected through a vigorous three-stage selection process evaluating the creativity, significance, feasibility, and clarity of the proposals.

“The 2017 Ideas for Action competition encourages young people from around the world to develop and share their ideas for innovative approaches, through the smart use of technology, as well as financing solutions, to solve development challenges.

Nigeria’s winning proposal, Kitovu, is an innovative platform and system that matches fertilizer type and quantity, improved quality seeds, and other inputs to the right soil.

The proposal envisions a web- and mobile-based decentralised fertilizer and seedling warehousing system that matches the right inputs to different farm locations owned by small-holder farmers in distant locations so as to lower the cost of cultivation while ensuring increased yields.

Mr Nwachinemere Emeka Obewe, who initiated the winning proposal, explained that the platform sought to create market access for smallholder farmers in distant locations by using a mix of web, mobile and SMS platforms to link farmers to processors, produce buyers, transporters, and other ecosystem stakeholders to tackle post-harvest losses and enable produce traceability while increasing farmer income.

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