Nigeria Computer Society, Govt to Boost Lagos Mega-City Project


The need to drive the planned Lagos mega-city project with software technology was the focus of a one-day collaborative forum between the Lagos branch of the Nigeria Computer Society and the Lagos Ministry of Science and Technology. The forum held in Lagos last week, with the theme: "ICT-Public/Private Sector Partnering", challenged members of NCS to develop indigenous software with local content that will boost the project, aimed at making Lagos attain a mega-city status.

Pleased with the initiative of NCS to collaborate with the state in attaining a mega-city status, Commissioner for Science and Technology, Dr. Femi Hamzat, listed the role ICT could play in making Lagos a mega-city. According to him, the state needs software with local content that would drive project management, e-health, e-transportation, e-pension reforms, digital cameras, among others.

Attaining the status of a mega-city requires the collaboration of NCS with the state government in the area of software that will eliminate waste, and at the same time speed up the process, the Commissioner said.According to him, "the greatest problem of Lagos government in attaining a mega-city status is project management." He said there was need for software that could check wastages in project handling and do a trace and track checks on all government projects in the state.

He explained that for any city to attain a mega-city status, such state need good health facilities, good transportation system with better road networks, adequate pension reforms, and high security measures put in place, adding that all these could be made easy if there were available software with local content that could drive all of these.

In the area of health facilities, the Commissioner said hospitals in Lagos need modern facilities that could take data of patients and administer treatment to patients virtually.

In the area of transportation, he said government was considering e-ticketing system that will bill passengers moderately and accurately and as well remove all forms of bottle-neck associated with the current Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) system in the state.

For the pension reforms, he said government introduced Electronic Data System (EDS) management that helped government in giving proper attention to pensioners and checking financial waste in governance.Government, he added, has installed several digital cameras on the streets of Lagos to detect crimes fast and easily. He called on NCS members to develop software that could be used to power more digital cameras to detect sounds, turn towards areas where sounds emanate from and capture the scene as quickly as possible.

"If health, transportation, education and waste management are taken care of through locally developed software, then Lagos, with a population of over 17 million people, will before 2015, become the biggest mega-city in the world," Hamzat said during his paper presentation at the collaborative forum.

Daily Independent