Nigerian government facilitates e-Government summit in Abuja

Helen Shok Jok. Abuja

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The Nigerian government is facilitating a summit that will empower the public sector to leverage on ICT and other technologies to improve  the productivity of its workforce.

It is a two day Nigeria Public Sector Productivity and Innovation Summit holding in Abuja, organized by the National Productivity Centre and the Leadership and Professional Ethics Consult.

The Summit which opened on Tuesday is aimed at helping the nexus between e-government and productivity in Nigeria.

This is the median edition of the collaboration between the Nigerian Government and the Leadership and Professional Ethnics Consult on e-government, the summit is expected to be an annual event holding in the cities of Lagos in South-west Nigeria and Abuja, the nation’s capital.

Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Senator Omotayo Alasoadura, who declared the summit open, praised the efforts of the workforce in spite  of the challenging times, promising that government would continue to play its role to encourage Nigerian workers.

The Minister stressed the importance of e-governance as essential for public sector productivity and efficiency adding that government had made progress in providing essential and social services to the people, using electronic and digital tools and processes.

“Deploying such technologies that meet today’s needs and anticipates the future, has brought government closer to the people, especially those who equally have proficiency in the use of information and communication technology”.

“It would be unimaginable for government to regulate banks and other businesses with technology-oriented business models if government lacked the necessary technology scope”, he said.

Though most of the development in technology is focused on the private sector, according to the Minister, the public sector should not be left behind, “as the government has the responsibility of developing and implementing rule-based policies for the private sector to thrive.”

The Minister however, said government needed to be proactive in adopting new technologies to enable it deliver effectively its monitoring, regulatory and oversight responsibilities over the private sector.

“The essence of the summit is to highlight how these enabling technologies are transforming government productivity and creating the market for new skills, knowledge and jobs in a complementary way, through which government institutions have been able to do more with less while delivering greater output with desirable speed and precision.”

The Minister of State noted that the use of e-governance has made public service delivery far more effective and efficient, and thereby pumping out remarkable Public Sector productivity.

He called on the participants to make maximum use of their time at the Summit, and multiply their productivity at their respective duty posts with the e-Government tools acquired, for greater national productivity and growth.

Earlier in a welcome address, the Director-General, National Productivity Centre (NPC), Dr Kashim Akor, said that e-Governance had contributed immensely to public sector productivity in Nigeria.

Speaking on the theme, “Setting the Stage for e-government-the Future of Work and Productivity in the Public Service is Digital”, Dr Ako noted that Government had been driving productivity, efficiency and transparency using such e-Government deliverables as Treasury Single Account driven by Remita, and Bank Verification Number (BVN), among others adding that conducting government business online has remarkably cut cost, time and logistics for all stakeholders.

He said the National Productivity Centre, established by Law, has the mandate to accelerate socio-economic growth and development of Nigeria through productivity improvement in all sectors of the Nigerian economy.

The Centre executes this mandate by stimulating productivity consciousness monitoring productivity trends, research into productivity problems and proffering solutions as well as build skills and capacities of personnel, processes and systems of organizations to enhance productivity.

“Through several initiatives, programmes and interventions, we seek to help players in both the public and private sectors achieve more in such a way that will result in sustainable output and growth,” Dr Ako said.

Two participants, Chief Nkem Okwuofu, Chairman, Civil Service Commission Delta State in Southern Nigeria and Assistant Corps Marshall, Federal Road Safety Corps in Nigeria, Hyginus Fuomsuk, believe that the Summit came at the right time when the whole world has either moved or moving to total digitization of services.

The commended the organizers for the quality of lecture titles lined up for the two day event.

The Summit which will end today, Wednesday, drew participants from States, Local and Federal Government civil service, Military, Para-Military and the private sector.

Omolayo.A