Women, youth and small medium and micro enterprises joined large companies and government bodies to celebrate South African innovation at its best at the prestigious State Information Technology Agency (SITA) Public Service ICT Awards ceremony on 30 October.
Based on the quality of nominations and winners announced at the awards gala dinner sponsored by Gijima, which was held at Gallagher Convention Centre, SITA acting chairperson, Z.D. Nomvete, said that he was confident that South Africa housed ample innovation to support government’s “e-strategy” for the country.
The award categories were Youth in ICT Award; Women in ICT Award; ICT Innovation and Service Transformation Award for Larger Companies; ICT Provider Innovation and Service Transformation Award for Start-ups and SMMEs; ICT Service Delivery and Transformation Award – Local Government; ICT Service Delivery and Transformation Award – Provincial Government; and ICT Service Delivery and Transformation Award – National Government. A new category was added to this year’s awards, namely the ICT Contributor of the Year Award which awards the best performer out of all of the seven category winners.
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Importantly, the Youth in ICT Award promotes the contribution made by young professionals to the local ICT industry, and to the growth and development of the sector as a whole. This year’s winner was Joel Seabi, the deputy director of ICT Security of the Co-operative Governance, Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs’ (CoGHSTA) Limpopo team. He has played an integral role in the development of ground-breaking projects undertaken by the department, to date. Qiniso Mazubane, managing director of Ndiza Information Systems and Communication Technology, was first runner up and Moabi Setshedi, a key member of Mohaba Solutions, second runner up in this category.
The Women in ICT Award, sponsored by Vodacom, aims to promote the industry to all professionals by recognising the contribution that women make to the ICT industry and to the future of the profession. The winner of this category was Mymoena Ismail. As a leader of non-profit organisation, Cape Digital Foundation, she has been responsible for creating a connected economy in the Western Cape. Ismail is also one of the architects for “e-skills” human-capacity development in South Africa and has dedicated herself to the “e-readiness” agenda in the country. Rianette Leibowitz, CEO of SaveTNet Cyber Safety NPC, was the first runner up and Zibuyile Buthelezi, chairperson of the KwaZulu-Natal Black IT Forum, the second runner up in this category.
The ICT Innovation and Service Transformation Award for Larger Companies recognises the input of companies with turnovers greater than R10-million per annum in improving service delivery to citizens. The impact their projects have had on citizens and improvement of public service delivery are a major consideration. Memeza was the winner of this category as a driver of the Public Community Policing alarms project. Since 2015, more than 1 000 community alarms have been installed into schools, homes of elderly and crime victims, drastically reducing crime in those areas. Huawei was first runner up for building a Smart City for the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality and BIGRADAP Group second runner up for the design, development and maintenance of an Integrated Multi-Sectoral System.
The ICT Provider Innovation and Service Transformation Award for Start-ups and SMMEs, sponsored by Sentech, recognises companies with turnovers of no more than R10-million per annum that have bettered service delivery to citizens. Consideration is also given to the impact the project has had on citizens and the improvement of, or the potential to improve public service delivery. The winner of this category was A2D24, which developed the RESPONSE software application. It is an innovative dispatch tool for emergency vehicles, using Uber-type technology to automatically deploy critical medical assistance timeously. Mohaba Solutions was first runner up for its Karabo Healthcare Finder Application and Kasana Computer School and Repair Centre third runner up.
The ICT Delivery and Transformation Awards reward the most outstanding service delivery, or a product or service, and/or transformation at the various levels of government.
Ekurhuleni Metro Municipality was the winner of the ICT Service Delivery and Transformation Award – Local Government category. The municipality is a driver of a number of important IT initiatives in its jurisdiction, including free Wi-Fi, roll-out of fibre optics, development of a converged infrastructure platform and provision of “eServices”. This five-year project has ensured that the municipality is a responsive, connected and collaborative city. The Department of Government Communication & Information Systems was the first runner up for GovChat and CoGHSTA Limpopo second runner up in this category for its ICT infrastructure, Systems, Governance and Security Project.
The Department of Transport and Public Works Western Cape was the winner in the ICT Service Delivery and Transformation Award – Provincial Government category for its Fleetman solution. This bespoke fleet management system based on the Oracle server platform manages the entire life-cycle of the asset. CoGHSTA Limpopo was the runner up for its Open Development Engine, or commonly referred to as “CODE”.
The Department of Home Affairs was the winner in the ICT Service Delivery and Transformation Award – National Government category as a driver of the Automated Booking System for Refugee Reception Centres. These countrywide facilities allow for seamless application, processing and issuing of permits to non-citizens who are fleeing from persecutions in their home countries. The Department of Government Communication & Information Systems was first runner up for the Development of a Google Playstore and Apple ITunes store Free Information download and Stats SA second runner up for its Go-Survey Navigation Application.
Mymoena Ismail was also the worthy winner of new category added to this year’s awards, namely the ICT Contributor of the Year Award. Ismail was considered the best performer out of all of the seven category winners, in terms of her contribution to the ICT industry in 2016, sending a very strong motivation to other women in industry at large!