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East Africa Comes out top at the 2012 DStv Eutelsat Star Awards

PARIS and JOHANNESBURG, December 12, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --

Organised by Eutelsat and MultiChoice Africa, the 2012 DStv Eutelsat Star Awards has proved a resounding success, drawing on the popularity of last year's first edition for high-school students from across Africa. The winners of the second edition were announced in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, with a spotlight on East Africa as Anthony Oyom Peter from Uganda was chosen as the winner for his essay and Eva Chemwgorem from Kenya for her poster.

Anthony came out top in the Best Essay Award category with his entry "A watchful eye from above the heavens" that impressed the judges with its creativity. This is the second year that a Ugandan student takes first place in the DStv Eutelsat Star Awards, after last year's winner, Mary Musimire. The Best Poster Award went to Eva Chemwgorem from Kenya titled "Africa united through satellites". Antony's prize is a trip with one of his parents to watch a live rocket launch and a visit to Eutelsat in France. Eva will also visit Eutelsat's Paris headquarters to get a closer insight on satellite technology. Merit Awards for the runners up for Best Essay and Best Poster Awards went to Charles Finch from Swaziland and Tony Tumnsiime from Uganda who will both visit MultiChoice's broadcast facilities in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Of over 1100 entries from across the continent, the final judging panel commented on the high standard of work by the 16 finalists. The panel members comprised Judging Chairman, Patrick Baudry, an experienced astronaut and UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador; Queen Mbori, Sub editor at the Citizen newspaper; Catherine Bukoza, Principal Education Officer from the Education Ministry, Tanzania; Jane Mbugua, Senior assistant Director at Kenya's Ministry of Education, and Frederique Gautier representing Eutelsat.

Addressing students at the University of Dar es Salaam, Patrick Baudry encouraged a belief in the impossible: "Before I went to space on the NASA Space Shuttle mission, I had dreamt of this day for as long as I remember. A phenomenal experience such as the one I had should encourage all young people to hold on to their vision and to aspire to achieve the best in their lives. During the judging of the DStv Eutelsat Star Awards, I was impressed by the quality of the entries and I am honoured to have been involved in promoting a love for science by high-school students. Science has the ability to change Africa's landscape and its economic success. May the continent's potential be realised through initiatives such as these awards that seek to bring forth innovators and world changers."

Michel de Rosen, CEO of Eutelsat Communications said: "With more than 1,100 essays and posters taking part in this competition, the DStv Eutelsat Star Awards underscores intense student interest in space and satellite technologies as well as a keen awareness of the challenge of transforming the transition to digital technologies into economic and social progress of benefit to all. The overwhelming response to the Awards encourages us to increase our commitment with MultiChoice Africa and to combine our expertise in order to support science and technology education in Africa."

Nico Meyer, CEO of MultiChoice Africa added that considering the scope of Africa's challenges today, it is impossible for one organisation to effect change without on-the-ground support. "Partnerships are crucial in spreading the burden of development, and identifying and sharing the responsibilities. Partnerships are also central to our core business at MultiChoice. We depend on strong ties with governments, service providers, subscribers and shareholders for continued growth and success. Our application of our Corporate Social Investments is no different. We prioritise building and mobilising partnerships with country governments and our business partners to jointly leverage our assets and expertise to nurture talent, harness skills and expand opportunity through technology access. We are delighted with our participation with these awards as the ultimate endorsement of our support of continental growth and the development agenda for Africa as a whole."

About Eutelsat Communications

Eutelsat Communications (Euronext Paris: ETL, ISIN code: FR0010221234) is the holding company of Eutelsat S.A. With capacity commercialised on 29 satellites that provide coverage across Europe, as well as the Middle East, Africa and significant parts of Asia and the Americas, Eutelsat is one of the world's three leading satellite operators. As of 30 September 2012 Eutelsat's satellites were broadcasting more than 4,400 television channels to over 200 million cable and satellite homes in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The Group's satellites also serve a wide range of fixed and mobile telecommunications services, TV contribution markets, corporate networks, and broadband markets for Internet Service Providers and for transport, maritime and in-flight markets. Eutelsat's broadband subsidiary, Skylogic, markets and operates high speed Internet services through teleports in France and that serve consumers, enterprises, local communities, government agencies and aid organisations in Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas. Headquartered in Paris, Eutelsat and its subsidiaries employ just over 750 commercial, technical and operational professionals. This culturally diverse staff comprises employees from 30 countries.

About MultiChoice Africa

MultiChoice Africa is the leading digital pay television operator in Africa offering digital multi-channel multi-platform television entertainment. As a pioneer of pay television, with an unmatched track record of over two decades of investment on the continent, its investments have brought both social and economic benefits to the communities in which it operates through investment, job opportunities, partnerships and training. MultiChoice Africa provides a dynamic technology platform and assembles a range of bouquets built around compelling news, as well as premium movies, documentaries and sports channels.  -  Follow us on Twitter @Eutelsat_SA and Facebook Eutelsat.SA

SOURCE Eutelsat Communications and DStv

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