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Unveiling the Victors: Zindi Hackathon Winners Share Their Journeys

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IN a thrilling collaboration between Zindi, the online competition platform, and UNILUS, an urban mobility hackathon powered by Zambia’s leading tech company, Yango, unfolded on Saturday, 4th November. This unique event brought together 174 participants from across Zambia, with a notable presence of active female IT specialists. The challenge was clear: build a machine learning model that determines the average speed along major roads in Lusaka at different times of the day, utilizing data from the September 2023 traffic pattern. The stakes were high, with a total prize pool of $1000 awaiting the top-performing models.

Meet the Winners

1. Silas Phiri: Champion of the Challenge

Motivation to Participate:

Sila Phiri, the ultimate winner, approached the hackathon with an eagerness to contribute his skills to solving a local problem. His history in Kaggle competitions fueled his excitement, making this indigenous challenge a special endeavor.

Memorable Moment or Challenge:

For Sila, the most memorable moment was the thrill of making a second submission and catapulting to the top of the leaderboard. His journey was not without challenges, notably the pressure of maintaining the top spot after briefly being overtaken.

Influence on Perspective and New Insights Gained:

Sila’s experience left him with a reinforced belief in the importance of robust cross-validation, even when not leading the public leaderboard. This deepened understanding was a new skill he gained during the hackathon.

Time Management and Recognition:

Following the 80-20 rule, Sila focused on tasks that promised the most significant improvements to his model within the given time frame. Being recognized as the top participant motivates Sila to continue learning and working harder, and he expresses gratitude to Yango for the opportunity.

2. Jackson Kawala: Second Place Honors

Motivation to Participate:

Jackson Kawala joined the competition unexpectedly, joining around 3:30 pm. Despite the late start, his motivation was to test his skills and see how far he could go, overcoming the time constraints.

Memorable Moment or Challenge:

Joining late presented its challenges, leaving Jackson with only two and a half hours to participate. The primary challenge was determining which features to include in his models given the limited time. Facing a time crunch, Jackson decided to use all features, opting for a practical solution under the circumstances.

Influence on Perspective and New Insights Gained:

Jackson attributed his knowledge to the Zindi and Kaggle communities, acknowledging the collaborative effort that drives the data science field. He gained insights into hyperparameter tuning using the CatBoost library, a model he hadn’t used before the competition.

Feelings on Recognition:

While acknowledging the good feeling of success, Jackson reflected on whether it was due to luck, skill, or a combination. He expressed gratitude to Yango for sponsoring the hackathon and providing data.

3. Sitwala Mundia: Third Place Triumph

Motivation to Participate:

Sitwala Mundia participated in the hackathon for its indigenous focus on local solutions, providing an opportunity to interact with fellow data scientists and improve his skills. Although Sitwala worked independently, he actively sought insights from fellow data scientists and researched the challenge before the hackathon.

Memorable Moment or Challenge:

His journey saw him at the top position for several hours, facing the challenge of maintaining it as others vied for the lead. Despite this, Sitwala maintained his composure and eventually regained the number one spot. Sitwala’s experience provided insights into hyperparameter tuning using the CatBoost library, further enhancing his skill set.

Influence on Perspective and New Insights Gained:

Jackson attributed his knowledge to the Zindi and Kaggle communities, acknowledging the collaborative effort that drives the data science field. He gained insights into hyperparameter tuning using the CatBoost library, a model he hadn’t used before the competition.

Feelings on Recognition:

Being recognized as one of the top participants ignited excitement for Sitwala, looking forward to the next hackathon. He expressed appreciation to Yango for organizing the initiative.

Conclusion

The Zindi Hackathon, powered by Yango, not only showcased the data science prowess of its participants but also highlighted the diverse motivations, challenges, and strategies employed by the top three winners. As these data enthusiasts continue to learn and grow, fueled by their recognition, the event stands as a testament to the power of collaboration, innovation, and the endless possibilities within the realm of data science challenges.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Business

ACC nab senior accountant, businessman 

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A LUSAKA based senior accountant has been arrested by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) alongside a business man for possession of property suspected to be proceeds of crime.

Kasemuka Chiteta, a senior accountant stationed at police headquarters has since been charged with one count of possession of property suspected of being proceeds of crime.

ACC head of corporate communications Timothy Moono said in a statement that Kasemuka Chiteta on dates unknown but between 7th April, 2023 and 12th February 2024 in Lusaka District, concealed possession of a motor vehicle namely Toyota Landcruiser BAD4360 registered under the ownership of Chimuka Chibawe a Lusaka based businessman.

“In a similar development, the ACC has arrested and charged a Lusaka based businessman, Chimuka Chibawe of plot No. 136 C Kalomo road Chilenje” Mr Moono said.

He said Mr Chibawe has been charged with one count of Possession of Property Suspected of Being Proceeds of Crime contrary to Section 71 (1) of the Forfeiture of Proceeds of Crime Act No. 19 of 2010.

“Details of the offence are that, Chimuka Chibawe on dates unknown but between 7th April, 2023 and 12thFebruary 2024 in Lusaka, concealed possession of a motor vehicle namely Toyota Landcruiser BAD4360 registered under his names when the beneficial owner is Mr. Kasemuka Chiteta a Senior Accountant at Police Service Headquarters,” he said.

The pair has since been released on bond pending court appearance.

(Mwebantu, Thursday, 29th February, 2024)

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Experience the Next Level of great entertainment with DStv Step Up!

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IT’s February and still feels like Jan-worry, but we have just the thing for you! Introducing the Step Up campaign, designed to elevate your viewing experience without breaking the bank. Welcome to the big leagues of entertainment!

From January 15th to March 31st, 2024, subscribers have the chance to upgrade their package and enjoy a plethora of additional channels at an unbeatable price.

Here’s a brief overview of how the Step Up campaign works and how you can make the most of your DStv subscription:

What is the Step Up Campaign?

Step Up is a limited-time offer for DStv subscribers. During this campaign, subscribers can upgrade their package to a higher tier and receive a further upgrade to an even higher package within 48 hours of payment. It’s like getting a premium experience at a fraction of the cost, courtesy of DStv!

How does it work?

• If you’re on DStv Lite (K120), upgrading to DStv Access (K190) will bump you up to DStv Family (K345), unlocking lifestyle channels, more music options, top-notch kids’ entertainment, and premium European football coverage.

• Subscribers on DStv Access (K190) who upgrade to DStv Family (K345) will enjoy access to DStv Compact (K520), featuring the best in local content, the Premier League, and more.

• Upgrading from DStv Family (K345) to DStv Compact (K520) grants you a whole month’s access to DStv Compact Plus (K770), offering UEFA Champions League matches, international series on 1Magic, and captivating documentary channels like History Channel.

• Those on DStv Compact who upgrade to DStv Compact Plus (K770) will find themselves enjoying DStv Premium (K1,200), where blockbuster movies, hit series, and premium sports like Tennis, Golf, and F1 await.

Take the leap and Step Up today to indulge in a wide array of entertainment options, experience your favourite shows in high definition, and access exclusive content available only on higher-tier packages.

If you’ve recently been disconnected, fear not! Simply reconnect to one of the eligible packages mentioned above and elevate your viewing experience. Plus, enjoy the convenience of watching your new package on DStv Stream, anytime and anywhere.

Don’t let this opportunity pass you by in the new year. Step Up to a whole new level of entertainment with DStv!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Business

Delta Mines acquires 51% stake in Mopani Copper Mines in $1.1 billion deal.

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DELTA Mines Plc, has concluded the acquisition of 51% shareholding in Mopani Copper Mines (MCM) translating into a US$1.1 billion investment into the mine.

In a statement, ZCCM-IH Corporate Affairs Manager Loisa Mbatha said ZCCM-IH will retain 49% shares in Mopani, with 3 out of 9 board seats while Delta will have 5 and government one seat

She said the approval was made during a Shareholder’s Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) held in Lusaka last week.

“ZCCM Investments Holdings Plc (ZCCM-IH) shareholders have unanimously approved the Mopani Copper Mines Plc (Mapani) transaction where Delta Mining Limited (Delta), a subsidiary of International Resource Holdings (IRH), has agreed to acquire a 51% shareholding in Mopani for a total investment of up to US$1.1 billion,”she said.

ZCCM-IH Board Chairperson Kakenenwa Muyangwa said the transaction is a landmark achievement that delivers significant value to ZCCM-H, Mopani, and the Zambian people.

“It’s pleasing to note that IRH has committed to retain Zambian workers, including the management team, who will be complimented by new skills and expertise from Delta to facilitate the expansion of MCM production to 200, 000 tonnes per annum”, said Mr Muyangwa.

ZCCM-IH Board Director Phillippe Taussac who represents minority shareholders said that “the extinguishing of the Mopani $1.5billion debt that ZCCM-IH had guaranteed, will certainly lead to significantly improved financial performance for all ZCCM-H’s shareholders.

(Mwebantu, Tuesday, 27th February, 2024)

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