Having realised the role of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) in advancing development and empowering the people, the Osun State government has said it is investing in technology that will help the state increase its revenue generation and at the same time empower its citizens to do more.
The State Commissioner for Innovation, Science and Technology, Oluremi Omowaye who dropped the hint at a recent technology forum in Lagos, said no nation would advance without investing in technology.
Listing some of the technology investments in the state, the commissioner said the state had concluded on its toll-free enquiry call centre that would help empower its citizens in the area of agriculture and emergency response. The centre, he said, would be inaugurated in the coming days.
According to him, “When we were putting up the toll-free enquiry call centre for the state, we realised that we needed a short code that people could easily remember when they have need to call the centre. “So, we approached the telecoms industry regulator, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) for a three-digit short code and NCC supported us in achieving the initiative.
“The call centre is ready, and we are going to deplore it by next week. It is designed in such a way that every livestock in the state will have an identity. So people can send SMS to the short code issued by NCC, and they will immediately get a response from the centre, informing the person about the owner of the livestock. The call centre will also notify the livestock owner of the possible buyer.
“Aside agriculture, the short code could be used for other things like getting the state ambulance service, the security operatives for any emergency and I need to commend the NCC for helping us in achieving this feat.
“We also plan to connect the state call centre to other call centres outside the state for interstate connectivity.
“The state is doing well in terms of providing basic infrastructure for its citizens. The governor has done a lot around infrastructure development.
“We are currently working on stable power generation for the state to enable the citizens enjoy the full benefits of the infrastructure provided by the state,” the commissioner said.
He, however, urged its citizens to pay taxes regularly in order to help government serve the people better.
“We have deployed technology solutions that will boost tax collection and also enable government block all financial leakages in the state.”
According to him, the state generates less than N1 billion from tax collection, but could generate as much as N5 billion annually if the right technology is put in place.