World Bank team tours Edo, commends Obaseki on use of tech to drive land reform

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The World Bank has commended the Governor Godwin Obaseki-led administration in Edo State on the deployment of geospatial technology for land management and geo-mapping of the state.

The World Bank delegation led by Ms. Edda Ivan-Smith, made the commendation during a facility tour, at the Edo State Geographic Information Service (EdoGIS) Agency office in Benin City. The team also visited site of the Benin Industrial and Enterprise Park.

Addressing journalists after the tour, Ms. Ivan-Smith said the team was on a mission to collect relevant geographic informtion data of the state, adding that the team was impressed with the organization and seamless operations of EdoGIS, as it relates to documentation of lands, management of geo-mapping as well as surveys.

According to her, the World Bank was keen on supporting the state government to ensure small and medium scale businesses benefit from the private sector development in the state.

“We are impressed by EDOGIS and think it is a very well organised and managed. The World Bank is very keen to support the state government to ensure local communities, small and medium businesses, including farmers are able to benefit from private sector development in terms of shared benefits, and perhaps in preferential treatment in terms of employment opportunities,” she said.

Ms. Ivan-Smith added that the Bank is already working with Edo State on an economic transformation project, which will soon come on stream.

“We have a lot of information now which we can further improve our report and we will be sharing the findings later on this year,” she said.

Managing Director, EdoGIS, Mr. Francis Evbuomwan said the agency was putting in place a pilot scheme on community percolation to put an end to reoccurring inter-community conflicts over land sale and boundary disputes.

He said EdoGIS plans to engage in systematic titling to help the agency register every piece of property in the state, as it would enable agriculturists, industrialists and residents know their respective land sizes.