Elizabeth Korolo and Abdulsalam Ajara are two school girls from Makoko-Lagos suburban who invented a water purifying device which turns contaminated water into safe drinking water.
The two girls who are students of Wesley Girls’ Senior Secondary School, Yaba won the Stockholm Junior Water Prize Nigeria for their innovation which has gained global attention.
The award winning device is designed to purify and recycle contaminated water into safe drinkable water for people in riverine and rural areas.
The Bi-thermal water purifying device was judged the best by the panel of jury from Stockholm for its cost-effectiveness, economically visible, practicable and scalable.
Besides, the water dispenser has the ability to make portable water available to its users at a very little cost.
According to the girls, they were motivated to invent the device by the lack of drinkable water in their Makoko community. Though the community is surrounded by water, yet the water is not clean enough for human consumption.
Hence, getting clean and drinkable water is their greatest challenge, as the water available causes them to fall sick of sickness such as; cholera, and typhoid among others.
Makoko is an informal settlement (ungovernable) community across the third mainland bridge located on the coast of mainland. A third of the community is built on stilts along the lagoon and the rest is on the land.
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According to Elizabeth Korolo, “As a young girl, going to fetch water from a long distance exposes me to a lot of risks because of the area boys (street urchins) that lotters around the streets.”
Abdulsalam Ajara explained her experience thus; “I was in the kitchen boiling water and suddenly I felt the evaporating water can be converted to a drinkable water because it is the best form of water to drink.”
Both girls said that the competition offered them the opportunity to birth their dream of inventing a device that will help the community solve the problem of sourcing a purified and drinkable water.
“The competition triggered us into the innovation, becau
Read also: A rare gift for Makoko’s relegated childrense the community is faced with the problem of getting drinkable water though it is surrounded by water,” they said.
With this feat Korolo and Ajara have joined the league of Sybilla Masters, who is the first female to invent a way to clean and refine the Indian corn that the colonists grew in early America, and received the first patent issued to man or woman in recorded American history in 1715.
Masters innovation processed the corn into many different food and cloth products.
Others are Sheryl Sandberg, Ginni Rometty, Marissa Mayer, and Susan Wojcicki, who have made significant contributions to science, technology and society, with their innovative approach to business and leadership driving growth and success in their respective industries in the 21st-century.