A 24-year-old Burundian has won the grand final of the BBC Swahili young entrepreneur competition, Faidika na BBC (Prosper with the BBC), a press statement from BBC World Service said.
Uganda’s Prime Minister, Apolo Nsibambi, presented Ashura Kisesa with the winning trophy and US £5000 to help launch her business of building commercial public toilets in the cities and towns of East and Central Africa, a press statement read in part.
‘When the competition launched last year there were no female finalists, so my hearty congratulations to Ashura. I urge the BBC to adopt an affirmative action approach to encourage even more women to get into formal business.
This is a fantastic initiative helping young people to develop innovative skills and become job creators rather than job seekers’. Nsibambi said.
Ashura, the only woman in the final, beat four other budding entrepreneurs by effectively demonstrating how she would use the prize money to help turn her idea into a successful business that would have a positive impact on her community.
She pitched her idea to a panel of expert judges infront of a live audience. The judges were impressed with her presentation and well thought-out business plan.
‘I am very happy to win the top prize in this competition. The lack of public toilets throughout East and Central Africa is a major problem that needs to be addressed, and I hope to make a difference with my business idea. I cannot wait to get started with my business,” Kisesa said.
Faidika Na BBC Project Manager, Salim Kikeke said, “Kisesa is a worthy winner. Her business idea is fantastic and will clearly benefit lots of people in East and Central Africa. I wish her all the best, I am confident that she has a brilliant future.”
The four Faidika na BBC runners up were 22-year-old Witness Omoga from Kenya, 17-year-old Rangira Aime Frederick from Rwanda, 23-year-old Apolinary Joseph Laksh from Tanzania, and 23-year-old Derrick Kajukano from Uganda.