News Brief

36 African Teams Made It to the "First Global" Robotics Challenge In D.C.—Here's How They're Doing

The inaugural youth robotics competition, First Global Challenge, is taking place right now in Washington D.C. and these African teams are there to represent.

DIASPORA—The inaugural youth robotics competition, First Global Challenge, is taking place right now in Washington D.C.


The STEM competition sees teams—consisting of teenagers ages 15 to 18 years—from across the globe, submitting their inventions in the hopes of earning the highest number of points and winning the competition.

African countries came to represent this year—of the 158 teams in attendance—36 of them are from the continent, reports The Washington Times.

Earlier in the month, both the Afghan and Gambian teams were denied visa entry into the United States when they first applied. Despite this roadblock both teams made it to Washington D.C. to compete. The self-taught Gambian team will present their cube-shaped robot, which creates balls that help separate contaminated water from clean water. Around 60 percent of the teams at the competition are led by first-time inventors.

The competition is currently in its fourth round, and the most current rankings place Gabon in 6th place, Haiti in 10th place and the Robo Teens from Nigeria are in 15th place.

You can view the full fourth round rankings below:

First Global is putting an emphasis on female participation. More than 200 participants are women—some teams consist solely of women—and 60 percent of the teams are being led and organized by women in tech.

You can keep up with the competition via Twitter to see which country wins the title, and check out more African teams in action below.

News Brief
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Six Things History Will Remember Kenneth Kaunda For

News of Kenneth David Kaunda's passing, at age 97, has reverberated across the globe. Kaunda, affectionately known as KK, was Zambia's first President from 1964 to 1991.

Following Nelson Mandela's passing in December 2013, Kenneth Kaunda became Africa's last standing hero. Now with his passing on Thursday, June 17 — after being admitted to the Maina Soko Military Hospital in Lusaka earlier in the week — this signals the end of Africa's liberation history chapter.

It is tempting to make saints out of the departed. The former Zambian struggle hero did many great things. He was, after all, one of the giants of the continent's struggle against colonialism. Ultimately however, he was a human being. And as with all humans, he lived a complicated and colourful life.

Here are six facts you might not have known about him.

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