Nigeria may be Africa’s biggest economy by GDP size but the country still suffers from epileptic power supply that has stymied rapid growth over the years. But even when the service is on, smart metering has been a problem as majority of households still don’t have meters. This is why the Lagos state government plans to use its resources to establish affordable electricity for the entire city in consortium with the Eko Innovations center based on the availability of smart electricity meter innovations.
The Lagos State Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources recently partnered with Eko Innovation Centre to upgrade the reliability of steady energy and the access to affordable smart electricity meter for all Lagos residents.
The Lagos State launched a program in July 2020 that was themed: Lagos Smart Meter Hackathon 2020, a platform that challenged local youngsters with the right talent to develop reliable and affordable smart electricity meters with N10m as a cash prize. The program aims to boost smart electricity meters availability to about 70 percent of the residents in Lagos State who cannot own the smart electricity meters due to the meter’s high cost.
The Lagos State Government also endorsed the program with the sum of N7million as the cash prize for the announced winner to congratulate the participant for their contributed effort in developing the new technology for electricity meters. The winner obvuosuky gets a free publicity of other ventures they may be involved with because of likes of the Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the Chairman of MOMAS Electricity Meters Manufacturing Company Limited Engr. Kola Balogun and the C.E.O. of Venture Garden Group, Bunmi Akinyemiju are all notable personages in Lagos city. They also endorsed the program with N1million each to arrive at N10 million cash grand prize. The C.E.O. of MOJEC International Chantelle Abdul, also endorsed the program with N2million for the second and third runners up.
In the end, the Power Bit Crunchers Team representing the Hardware category, and the Zeena Platform represents the Software category emerged the two winners and were awarded the N10million cash prize. However, both the winners and the runners-up are entitled to work permits at the Eko Innovation Centre. Amongst other prizes to be won, the remaining ten finalists will get mentorship opportunities as a consolation prize.
During the awarding ceremony, the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu said; Today is a true hallmark in our administration’s pursuit to improve the welfare of our people, as you are aware, a key pillar of our administrations T.H.E.M.E.S. plan is to make Lagos a 21st-century economy and this Lagos Smart Meter Hackathon fits perfectly as it combines innovation, creativity, and local capacity to deliver solutions that will improve access to electricity in Lagos.
“with inspiration to creativity and innovation, and that he saw in the participants with vibrant, energetic youthfulness, they inspire hope of brighter and bigger roles that technology and digitization would play in the country.
The Lagos State Governor also said that the Smart Meter Initiative is another demonstration of a promise kept by his administration as it aligns with the administrations T.H.E.M.E.S. plan to make Lagos a 21st-century economy, and that the result of the initiative would drive local capacity that would find homegrown solutions to solve our challenges, which is a great move in transforming the electricity sector in the state.
The Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu vouched to continuously follow the process of fulfilling his administration’s aims and objectives. He would also continue to support techies to harness their talent to develop the national economy based on the program’s outcomes, which has inspired his administration to take advantage of the global opportunities to develop the Lagos State electricity sector. On that the governor said, the young people in Lagos and Nigeria have proven to be hardworking and brilliant. We will do all we can to support them through various ministries, agencies, enabling policies, and incentives. Everyone is a winner. Someone must just be declared the winner to fulfill all righteousness.
Concerning the new prototype of the smart electricity meter, the Zeena team demonstrated their demo of the prototype design smart electricity meter software capable of fixing tariffs and usage restrictions and protecting electricity consumption by its subscribers. The Zeena team said that administrators could control pricing, check working meters, energy consumption, and perform oversight functions even remotely. Our database will run on blockchain technology which further providers an extra layer of security to users who may be concerned about privacy.
While the Power Bit Crunchers team in the hardware category explained that “their prototype design for smart electricity meter can be monitored and controlled remotely, with additional tamper-proof functionalities which protect against bypass and other fraudulent activities.” This fraudulent activities are also a big factor in the delivery of electricity as distribution companies say they lose billions of Naira in revenue as a result of cheating.