Government dignitaries, the academic community, scientific world and students will convene when MultiChoice Africa together with its partner, Eutelsat, hosts the 7th edition of the DStv Eutelsat Star Awards in Kampala on 12 April to announce continental winners.
Uganda, popularly called the “Pearl of Africa”, has produced the most winners since the competition began and is hoping to achieve a similar feat by dominating the competition on home soil.
MultiChoice and Eutelsat have once collaborated with European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Paolo Nespoli to lead the continental awards assessment process, which will take place in Kampala on 11 April. Nespoli has an illustrious career spanning stints at the European Astronaut Centre (ESA/EAC) and NASA’s Johnson Space Centre in Houston before being selected as an astronaut by the Italian Space Agency to fly as an ESA astronaut.
In 2017, for his third mission in space, named Vita, Nespoli spent 139 days on the International Space Station (ISS) during which he completed more than 60 experiments. Before that, he crewed on the 2007 Discovery shuttle mission and spent over five months in space in 2011 aboard the ISS, where he was responsible for a range of science and technology experiments and educational activities.
Nespoli will be assisted by a panel of industry experts that consisting of Professor Funso Falade, Dean, Faculty of Engineering, University of Lagos; Mr. Michael Niyitegeka, Country Manager, ICDL Africa; Mr. Patrice Paquot, Deputy Regional Vice-President for Sub-Saharan Africa, Eutelsat; as well as Ms. Patricia Kichoncho, Operations Manager, MultiChoice Uganda.
The overall winner of the essay award will be rewarded with a trip, along with a parent/legal guardian to Eutelsat in France and attend a live rocket launch in French Guiana.
The overall winner of the poster award will similarly be entitled to a trip, along with a parent or legal guardian, to the MultiChoice offices and the South African Space Agency at Hartbeesthoek.
The schools attended by the overall award winners will be rewarded with a DStv installation, including dish, television, state-of-the-art PVR decoder and free access to the DStv Education Package.