Geekulcha identifies Top 15 Young Geeks for 2024

Sibahle Malinga
By Sibahle Malinga, ITWeb senior news journalist.
Johannesburg, 11 Jun 2024
The Top 15 Young Geeks in South Africa for 2024.
The Top 15 Young Geeks in South Africa for 2024.

Geekulcha has named the Top 15 Young Geeks across South Africa, who will play a key role in bringing youth closer to the ICT industry and ignite tech potential in communities across the country.

The ICT youth organisation creates and enables platforms for innovation and creativity, while exposing young talent and skills to the industry for networking opportunities.

It also offers coding and programming skills, runs tech empowerment projects for youth and hosts tech-focused events, such as hackathons and workshops.

Each year, the nominations for the Top 15 Young Geeks open on 1 January and close on 30 April, followed by the adjudication process.

The initiative was created in 2017, to showcase and assess the health and state of digital capacity in SA, and help steer the organisation into the right direction.

The programme is open to technologists across SA under the age of 35, and this year the focus was on local technologists who are living and building the culture of business.

The Geekulcha community has expanded to over 30 000 members and the newly-chosen geeks will be Geekulcha change-makers, inspiring youngsters and high school pupils to enter the science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields.

As part of youth month, Geekulcha drives its Top 15 Young Geeks programme annually, to identify, profile, celebrate and channel support to some of the outstanding tech talent in SA.

The 15 young geeks were selected based on nominations, impact within their communities and the potential to impart tech-related knowledge to youngsters within these communities.

Tiyani Nghonyama, COO of Geekulcha, comments: “Over the years, the Top 15 Young Geeks list has always been highly-anticipated in the local tech scene and served as an inspiration to young and upcoming techies to strive for greatness and create an impact in their communities.”

Nghonyama tells ITWeb that as a host and facilitator of many hackathons across the continent, Geekulcha’s focus for 2024 is to help turn hackathon solutions into small businesses. The 15 young geeks will play an integral part of this process, he adds.

“It has always been challenging to turn hackathon ideas or teams into viable businesses, based on a number of factors. It was for this reason that we sought to unearth and celebrate local techies who are mastering the art of tech entrepreneurship and are experts at creating a business-enabling environment for youth in their communities,” added Nghonyama.

The top 15 finalists are:

Zime Nxumalo: Founder and CEO of Zime Zizwe Creatives, a blockchain development start-up on a mission to revolutionise industries.

Thulani Mabuza: Cyber security consultant and team lead at Orange Cyberdefense.

Cheslin Denman: CEO of Innoble, a digital platform to help SMEs gain important start-up-focused information and documents to unlock access to markets in multiple industries.

Freddie Manyate: Student at Sol Plaatje University, who actively participates in the community by serving as a volunteer robotics coach to four Kimberley-based schools.

Tanaka Lerato Dhliwayo: Founder and executive director at coding and robotics organisation Tanie Codes Org.

John Mamba: Systems developer at software company Artscience Technologies.

Simphiwe Zakwe: MD of waste management services firm Sanfoka Solutions.

Precious Mamotingoe Lesupi: Data scientist and founder of research-based firm Queers Code.

Fanelesibonge Mbuyazi: Software engineer at MultiChoice.

Mokakatla Masekela: Founder of safari firm ByAfrica Expeditions.

Tsholofelo Nkosi: Software engineer at MTN Group.

Nitasha Pillay:Founder of Tech Society.

Matsepo Soto: Founder of EmpowerHer Tech Foundation, a women empowerment advocacy programme.

Iman Ngwepe-Ntshibida: Intern at LGIT Smart Solutions.

Lehlohonolo Malomane: Co-founder of edtech firm FundaniBot.