26-year old Charlette Desire N’Guessan has been named this year’s winner of the Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation from the Royal Academy of Engineers. The Ghana-based Ivorian young champion and her team have been able to develop BACE API, facial recognition, and artificial intelligence software.
As the first-ever woman to win this award, N’Guessan expressing her joy stated “Being part of the Africa Prize has given us such confidence and we focus on Africa because we want to make sure BACE API is used by our people and works for them. We are so grateful to the Academy, and cannot wait to take our innovation to new heights.”
After research on financial institutions in Ghana and an estimated amount of $400 million that is used to protect their clients from fraud, N’Guessan and her team set out to solve the rising problem of cyber crimes and identity fraud in banks. that Ghana’s banks have a significant problem with identity fraud and cyber crime
In collaboration with data controlling systems that have access legally issued documents, BACE API can use information from passports to help in the verification processes of its users. The BACE API software, made uniquely for Africans uses devices in-built for its operations.
From financial institutions to business, the software has proved efficient in the day-to-day activities of its users and became an effective way to do business virtually with clients during the COVID-19 pandemic and is doing more to make lives easier.
Minister for Africa, UK, James Duddridge MP congratulated participants, stating that the UK is open to nurturing talents and transforming lives. “The UK is a hub of engineering innovation and home to a wealth of entrepreneurial talent and experience. By partnering this talent with the most promising African innovators we can create local solutions to global challenges, transforming lives, and improving economies.” He said.
All fifteen candidates chosen from six sub-Saharan Africa went through months of training and mentoring through which they learned how to market their innovations and approach investors with courage.
A judge from the competition, Ms. Rebecca Enonchong speaking in an interview said “We are very proud to have Charlette N’Guessan and her team win this award and it is essential to have technologies like facial recognition based on African communities, and we are confident their innovative technology will have far-reaching benefits.”
In its 6th year, the prestigious Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation was founded by the Royal Academy of Engineering in the United Kingdom to acknowledge and celebrate engineering entrepreneurship in sub-Saharan-Africa.