Uganda takes Grand Prize at the 2023-2024 Huawei ICT Competition Global Final

Uganda takes Grand Prize at the 2023-2024 Huawei ICT Competition Global Final
Team Uganda takes Grand Prize alongside Amb. Oliver Wonekha

Shenzhen, China. Three teams of ICT students from Uganda celebrated a strong show at the global final of the 8th Huawei ICT Competition held in Shenzhen, China. Students from Uganda secured the following prize(s):

  • Grand prize: Network Track Team 1 (Gulu University and Muni University)
  • First Prize: Network Track Team 2 (Kabale University)
  • Second Prize: Computing Track Team 1 (Muni University)
  • Women In Tech Award: Network Team 2 (Kabale University)

This group of Ugandan 13 students was flagged off by the First lady, Minister of Education and Sports of Uganda Maama Janet K. Museveni on Thursday 16th May 2024, at State House Nakasero where she wished them success as they represented Uganda in the Global Final ICT Competitions.

The First Lady appreciated the students for their determination and commitment to the competitions which has led them to the global finals. She encouraged the students to be resilient as they represent their country, raise the Ugandan flag high and return home with victory. She also thanked the students for their exceptional performance at the Southern African Region competition level and tasked them to do the same at the global level.  

The 2023-2024 ICT Competition circuit attracted more than 170,000 students from over 2,000 universities and colleges across more than 80 countries and regions, making it the largest offline competition since its launch in 2015. More than 160 teams consisting of over 470 contestants from 49 different countries and regions reached the global final in Shenzhen, having previously been successful in their respective national and regional competitions.

The Ambassador from Uganda to the People’s Republic of China H.E Oliver Wonekha at the event during the media interview thanked Huawei for this initiative during the event and said that “this competition means a lot. AI and digital transformation is the way to go. It is important and it is timely that Huawei is doing what it is doing.”

Figure 2: A group photo of all the Ugandan students who participated in the global finals in Shenzhen, Amb. Oliver Wonekha in the middle if the photo.

Madam Ambassador concluded by saying “I congratulate all the students for not having just shown interest and engaged, but for having come this far in the competitions”. In addition to the statement she concluded stating that “As for you students from Uganda, make sure you go back home and help in the development of the country because the future is in your hands.”

At the Huawei ICT Competition 2023-2024 Final Closing & Awarding Ceremony, Zhou Hong, President of Huawei's Institute of Strategic Research, addressed the finalists, saying: "To make sure everyone can truly enjoy the benefits of digitalization while such technologies are making radical progress, Huawei believes it is crucial to guarantee that digital technologies are accessible to all."

Peng Honghua, President of Huawei’s ICT Strategy and Business Development Department, said, "ICT is the cornerstone of the intelligent world. Through the Huawei ICT Competition, we aim to provide students with a global platform to compete and exchange ideas."

On the same day, Huawei also held the ICT Accelerating Education Transformation Summit. At the summit, Huawei awarded 24 instructors the title Huawei ICT Academy Global Most Valuable Instructor (MVI) for the first time. This award aims to show gratitude for the important contributions these instructors have made to talent development, and mark them as role models that show how the brightest minds can develop even brighter minds. These role models will help drive sustainable development of the ICT talent ecosystem.

Mr. John Peter Olinga one of the Most Valuable Instructors represented Uganda and during the forum Mr. Olinga discussed in depth two things that we need to improve the rate of ICT talent development and accelerate adoption in the industry of Uganda which were, one ensuring even access to practical learning of these technologies and two, to reduce/close the gender digital divide.

Figure 3: Mr. John Peter Olinga speaking during the MVI Global forum 2024

Mr. John Peter encouraged more students to take part in the Huawei ICT Competition as it is a single pack of technical, professional and soft skills in a short period of time. He concluded by stating that “I appreciate Huawei for helping Uganda take the first important gigantic steps towards the development of ICTs.”

The Huawei ICT Competition is an annual contest held by Huawei for global university and college students. Through the competition, Huawei aims to provide students with an international platform for healthy competition and the exchange of ideas. Since its launch in 2015, the competition has helped students enhance their ICT knowledge and practical skills, while also increasing their ability to innovate by using new technologies and platforms. The ultimate goal is to advance technological development and facilitate digital inclusion around the world. As one of Huawei's key Seeds for the Future 2.0 projects, Huawei ICT Competition aims to provide a platform for college students to compete and communicate with each other around the world.