StartupSouth Presents HackVotes Hackathon, with a Chance to Win Cash Prizes, to Help Solve Nigeria’s Voter Apathy Issues

HackVotes hackathon, an upcoming event being organized by StartupSouth now in its fourth edition, is seeking to solve Nigeria’s voter apathy issues through technology. To achieve this, they are awarding cash and other prizes worth N300,000 to students and hub members that are able to come up with solutions to any or all of the following voter apathy issues identified by experts:

  • Lack of Faith in the electoral system
  • Fear of violence at the polling units
  • Inadequate or insufficient voter registration arrangements and lack of cards
  • Voters’ inability to retrieve duly registered or missing voters card

Experts believe that a reason for Nigeria’s under-performance economically is as a result of ineffective or poor quality leadership. Nigeria’s process of leadership selection, which is through the ballot box, suffers from huge voter apathy leading to low turnout on election days.

The winning candidate in the 2015 election scored approximately 15million votes against his opponent’s 13million, but the total votes cast was less than 50% of the total registered voters. Poor voter turnout in some ways create room for irregularities and manipulations of election data by officials and political party agents, thereby subverting the true will of the people.

The teams that participate will be required to demonstrate the effectiveness of their solution and to show a clear-cut plan for mass adoption. Teams with female members will be given priority. Student/hub teams from anywhere in Nigeria are eligible to apply provided they adhere to the competition’s rules.

The rule states that all participants while engaged in the hackathon will commit to not declare an expression of support for, or opposition to, any particular party or candidate for public office. The project is purely civic and educational. All activities will be conducted without favor or disfavor to any political party or candidate.

Owerri will play host to the fourth edition of the StartupSouth event. Application deadline for the HackVotes hackathon is October 8th, 2018. All shortlisted teams will be expected to be in Owerri on October 30th, 2018. The hackathon camp commences on October 31th, 2018.

Accommodation and stipends to cover logistics will be provided for participants coming from outside Owerri. Participation at the event also provides a pass to the after party held after the conference.

Panelists and facilitators expected to lead the event include Hanson Johnson (Google Country Mentor), Xolomon Wuche ( and Wale Micaiah (StatiSense).

The award presentation ceremony for the winning teams will take place during the main event of the StartupSouth4 conference in Owerri on November 2, 2018.

The apply for the HackVotes hackathon, visit here

To register for the SouthupSouth conference, click this link

To arrange for accommodation, kindly send your details and itinerary to with the heading: SS/SE Media. Include when you plan to arrive in Owerri.

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