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Smart City: How has Lagos State fared?

Smart City: How has Lagos State fared?
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Lagos is pursuing an ambitious plan to build the nation’s economic hub into a smart city in line with fast-growing trend across the world.

A smart city is an urban development vision to integrate multiple information and communication technology (ICT) and Internet of Things (IoT) solutions in a secure fashion to manage a city’s assets.

The goal of building a smart city is to improve quality of life by using urban informatics and technology to improve the efficiency of services and meet residents’ needs.

Connected generation: Cross section of participants at the #TechPlus2016 gaming event held at the Eko Hotel and Suites in Lagos
Connected generation: Cross section of participants at the #TechPlus2016 gaming event held at the Eko Hotel and Suites in Lagos

[quote font=”georgia” font_size=”22″ font_style=”italic” align=”left” arrow=”yes”]The city’s assets which a smart city seeks to integrate and manage include local departments’ information systems, schools, libraries, transportation systems, hospitals, power plants, water supply networks, waste management, law enforcement and other community services.[/quote]The city’s assets which a smart city seeks to integrate and manage include local departments’ information systems, schools, libraries, transportation systems, hospitals, power plants, water supply networks, waste management, law enforcement and other community services.

The question, is Lagos ripe enough for this smart city development? The answer is yes.

Base on a report of ITU’s activities for Promoting Smart Sustainable Cities, as contained in “The State of Broadband 2016” released by the United Nation Broadband Commission, we can all agree that Lagos is ripe enough to pursue a smart city plan.

The U.N. report indicates that the sustainability of a smart city is based on four core themes:

  • Economic: The city must be able to thrive and generate jobs, income and employment for the livelihood of its inhabitants.
  • Social: The city must be able to provide for the welfare (safety, health, education) of its citizens equally.
  • Environmental: The city must be sustainable in its operations for present and future generations.
  • Governance: The city must be robust in its ability for administrating policies and pulling together the different elements.

According to the report, smart sustainable cities require trusted information infrastructure to support a huge volume and diversity of ICT applications and citizen-driven services.

The ICT infrastructure of a smart sustainable city should be open and interoperable, which can be achieved through adherence to common standards.

In Nigeria, Lagos State is economically strong in terms of income and employment. In May this year, Mr Akinyemi Ashade, the Lagos State’s Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, says that the State generated a total of N101.69 billion in revenue in the first quarter of 2016. Out of this revenue, a surplus of N4.85 billion was realised as against an expected N29.92 billion deficit.

In July, Lagos State Government announced its readiness to “massively reduce” dependence on Federal allocation and increase its Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) to a target of N30 billion monthly in 2017 and N50 billion monthly in 2018.

Part of Lagos State’s projection is to raise its yearly budget to N1 trillion by 2018 in what clearly suggest Lagos’ capability and readiness to become a smart city.

Under the smart city plan, the Lagos State Ministry of Science and Technology plan to deploy 12,000 surveillance cameras across the state to provide state-of-the-art ICT infrastructure that delivers essential services to residents of the state.

Lagos State photo release shows the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding for the Lagos Smart City that was on Monday signed at the Emirate Towers in Dubai by Mr. Adeniji Kazeem, Lagos State Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice (sitting left) and Mr. Jabber Bin Hafez, the Chief Executive Officer of Smart City Dubai LLC. Standing behind them is His Excellency, Ahmad Bin Byat, Chairman of Dubai Holdings, who is also the Deputy Prime Minister and Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, Lagos State Governor.
Lagos State photo release shows the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding for the Lagos Smart City that was on Monday signed at the Emirate Towers in Dubai by Mr. Adeniji Kazeem, Lagos State Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice (sitting left) and Mr. Jabber Bin Hafez, the Chief Executive Officer of Smart City Dubai LLC. Standing behind them is His Excellency, Ahmad Bin Byat, Chairman of Dubai Holdings, who is also the Deputy Prime Minister and Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, Lagos State Governor.

[quote font=”georgia” font_size=”22″ font_style=”italic” align=”left” arrow=”yes”] Last month, the Lagos State Government announced plans to activate multi-faceted projects among which is the commencement of the deployment of 13,000 CCTV cameras, additional 6,000 street lights and security sensors for surveillance and crime prevention across the Lagos from October 2016.[/quote]Mr Olufemi Odubyi, Commissioner for Science and Technology says that the smart city plan will see the provision of a metro network to connect all schools, hospitals, courts, police station and government facilities.

This linkage will also be complemented by a unified communication system for first emergency responders; provision of 4G LTE Technology and Broadband deployment of fibers across Lagos.

In June this year, the Lagos State Government and the City of Dubai signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the Lagos Smart City. The pact would, among others, lead to the deployment of 13,000 CCTV cameras and unified communication systems.

Significantly, Lagos State projects that over $10 billion will be invested in the economy of the Nigerian economic powerhouse, as part of the dividends of the new partnership with Dubai.

Last month, the Lagos State Government announced plans to activate multi-faceted projects among which is the commencement of the deployment of 13,000 CCTV cameras, additional 6,000 street lights and security sensors for surveillance and crime prevention across the Lagos from October 2016.

Economic hub: People seen walking inside Ikeja Computer Village in Lagos, Nigeria's biggest technology market cluster
Economic hub: People seen walking inside Ikeja Computer Village in Lagos, Nigeria’s biggest technology market cluster

Lagos has commenced the implementation of the Lagos Enterprise GIS upgrade and the Integrated Land Administration Automation System, under plans to use technologies that ensure proper monitoring of government infrastructure for optimum benefit, fast-track the ease of doing business and improve government-citizen relationship, the government says.

Speaking on the Smart City Project and the Integrated Land Administration Automation project, Odubiyi, the Commissioner for Science and Technology in Lagos, says that the EGIS project would help promote and encourage a secondary mortgage market and facilitate investment in properties, among other benefits.

According to Odubiyi, the project would witness the installation of information highway-metro fibre and deployment of 4GLTE networks across Lagos to support the government’s plan for full implementation of e-services like e-health and e-agric, among others.

If the ultimate goal of building a smart city is to improve quality of life by using urban informatics and technology to improve the efficiency of services and meet residents’ needs, Lagos is taking brisk and sure steps on the part of its ambitious vision.

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Success Kafoi Journalist at Technology Times Media. Mobile: 08077671673 email: success.kafoi@technologytimes.ng

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