Friday, January 21, 2022

Kwara embraces e-Govt to drive growth, investments

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By Steve Oni, Ilorin

Kwara State Government has established an e-Government Delivery Team to drive its efforts to deploy modern technology for government operations and make the state one of the easiest states to do business in Nigeria.

This is coming a few weeks after Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq said Kwara would turn the page on the recent 2018 poor ranking of the State in the national ease of doing business index released by the World Bank.

“The economic challenges that we face demand that we invest in and adopt technology to deliver services to citizens, businesses, and become efficient in public administration,” AbdulRazaq said at the official introduction of the e-Government team to the newly sworn in cabinet and top echelons of the civil service.

“For these reasons, we have set up the e-Government Delivery Team which must think anew by assessing some of our current processes and procedures, and devise ways to build a smarter government that works to meet the expectations of our people and the demands of the 21st century.

“As we take steps to grow our economy, we must embrace innovative means of fostering government interagency collaborations. This would make it easy for existing enterprises to thrive as well as attract domestic and foreign investors to do business in our sectors of competitive advantage, thereby creating jobs and economic opportunities for our people.”

Represented by Deputy Governor Kayode Alabi, AbdulRazaq said the team is tasked with assessing, streamlining and automating the state’s investment processes which he said may entail registering a business, acquiring land, registering property, obtaining permits, and licenses via the state’s Investment Promotion Enabling System (IPES) platform.

“I believe this will help fast-track government transactions, strengthen efficiency and transparency, improve our rankings in key areas, place Kwara among the easiest States to do business in Nigeria, and make Kwara a modern state as well as grow our economic and revenue base,” the Governor said.

The delivery team is led by e-Government expert Feyiseye Ogundoro, and is supported by a motley of technocrats from the state’s civil service.

The team took the cabinet through the e-Government take off template, saying the agenda is to develop technology systems and build the capacity of the state’s civil service to enable the government undertake and efficiently execute its functions.

The e-Government delivery team promised to deliver “integration of Kwara State Government MDAs, job creation through an enabling and sustainable business environment, improved policy-making and security through citizens engagement, and the development of digital platforms to drive revenue growth as well as improve government service delivery”.

The project would promote awareness of opportunities in Kwara and make the state a top destination for investors, among other benefits, according to the team.

“In order to build the e-Government capacity of the civil service and realistically adapt to reforms, this process of digitisation would be a gradual and carefully phased-out one”, the team added.

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