SA's smart city finalists win big for innovation
South Africa's City of Johannesburg's Smart City Office has awarded all four smart city challenge innovators 500,000 South African rand (US$31,433.77) for bringing solutions to the city.
Instead of choosing one winner, the South African municipality stated that all four challengers provided solutions that the capital city needed. Therefore, it was only logical to award the companies for their hard work.
During an award ceremony hosted by the Smart City Office, in collaboration with South African University's Wits Tshimologong Innovation Precinct, the office's Deputy Director Monique Griffiths cited that, after vetting all the innovators, it emerged that they all had solutions the city needed to accelerate service delivery, improve safety and enhance operational efficiencies.
"All the innovators had solutions that we as the City need and therefore, I am glad to announce that we have decided to award all of them with the cash prize," Griffiths added.
Monique D Griffiths, Deputy Director of the Smart City Office now introduces the finalists of the #COJSmartCityChallenge ahead of the awards handover. #COJSmartCityAwards ^NJ pic.twitter.com/0QgIyklXkc— City of Joburg (@CityofJoburgZA) June 27, 2022
Smart City Office Leader Lawrence Boya said that after months of trying to get the best solutions from the large volume of applications received, the quality of applicants ensured they all became winners.
"We will have four winners who will each pocket half a million rand and an opportunity to pilot their solutions with the City departments or entities in the line of business linked to the chosen solution," Boya said.
An amazing outcome to amazing #COJSmartCityChallenge finalists! The Smart City Office has awarded all 4 of our finalists the R500k prize money and all 4 innovations will be flighted by the City. #COJSmartCityAwards ^NJ pic.twitter.com/gKIXx41A0D— City of Joburg (@CityofJoburgZA) June 27, 2022
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*Top image is of The Smart City Office finalists who were awarded the cash prize. (Source: City of Joburg.)
— Matshepo Sehloho, Associate Editor, Connecting Africa