Cameroon:Young Cameroonian Wins FCA 5 Million For Producing Pharmaceutical Alcohol From Fruits

Gervais Martial Bella Oden

He emerged best, grabbing the biggest share of the non-refundable FCFA 50 million set aside for the 2021 Prototyping Support Fund, with the 24 other candidates sharing the rest of the money

From decaying fruits, Gervais Martial Bella Oden, a Douala based denizen produces pharmaceutical alcohol, and a project to expand the scheme has seen him emerge best among the laureates recognised by the State.

Bella Oden claims that if he gets appropriate funding, all decaying fruits will be directed to him and the country can be sure of reducing expenses on the importation of medical alcohol based solutions to the barest minimum. He ferments the fruits and sets them through a transformation process and the production and sale of the product has been described as a project to count on. And that is how he won the heart of the 30 man jury set to assess the over 1,000 projects submitted this year.

Napoleon NjangAbang, a Buea based entrepreneur who specialises in in-house decor has also taked home FCFA three million for a project to fight moisture in hospitals. “My project is actually on combatting moisture in houses. Our focus this time was hospitals, as we have a high rate of soil degradation in hospitals which worsens the health conditions of patients. So we look forward to bringing floor solutions that will last for over 30 years. This limits the spread of germs and makes it easy for it to be cleaned,” Napoleon NjangAbang said. He makes use of a chemical substance;resin, and compacts the soil, giving it various shades.

In the area of technology, the Antivirus Meye Protect project, presented by Serge StaphaneMeyeNtyam, got funded to the tune of FCFA 2.5 million. He claims to have developed the first all-African antivirus that will fight all computer malwares. “This funding will enable me to further develop an antivirus that will immunise the computer and the smartphone from some form of viruses and malware,” the IT engineer said.

Presiding over the Thursday March 10, 2022 event in Yaounde, the Minister of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises, Social Economy and Handicraft, AchilleBassilekin III, who chaired the event, said the award translates the fact thatcompetences are recognised bothlocally and internationally. He describe the laureates as “solution providers.” Just like the recently created Guarantee Fund for SMEs, Minister AchilleBassilekin III stressed that economic and social transformation is clearly linked to technology and innovation.

“The 2nd edition of the prototype award is an initiative, under the high patronage of the Head of State. It is not only organised to confirm that innovation is at the heart of development, but to continue to ensure that our young compatriots who are into this competitive process can get their project ideas developed. This confirms that we are giving innovation a priority,” the SMEs Minister said while chairing the event.

Speaking earlier, the Director General of the SMEs Promotion Agency, Jean-Marie Louis Badga said all beneficiaries deserve to be recognised, citing the competent jury, led by Professor Charles AwonoOnana. He (Director General) said over 1,000 candidates were on the starting block. The list dropped to 222, and another review brought the list down to 50. From this list, 25 have picked up envelopes, ranging from FCFA one – five million. 

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