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ICT expert bemoans dearth of data for economic development



AN international ICT expert and the Managing Partner/CEO of Hartford Green Consulting Limited (HGC), Adebayo Akinwunmi has described lack of data as a serious problem presently facing the Nigerian economy. 

  In a recent pre-event press briefing to mark HGC’s 10th anniversary, Akinwunmi said that for the country to record huge success and experience quantum leap in the development of its economy, the country must start developing and vigorously deploying data in its service delivery without which, “we won’t be able to make good and informed decisions”.

  According to the expert, the nation’s data challenges can be dealt with in many ways, saying “there are different data that can be put to use like criminal data which resides with the Police but could be accessed by Customs, Immigrations, among others.”

  He added that the same applies to Immigration data, which he noted could also be provided to other agencies in the country. “In the same vein, bank’s financial data he opined could be shared with the Insurance sector in order to grow the economy”. 

  The chief executive was appalled the situation in the financial sector, where he noted, banks keep their information to themselves. This situation, he stated, “leaves room for fraud and other challenges like it is in the insurance industry, where the system does not know when someone fraudulently creates claims in multiple places for the same incident and eventually gets paid because of inadequate and unshared data.” 

   Akinwunmi observed that the same data gap can also be noticed in other sectors of the economy, which he described as “the big missing link.” 

  But with data, he opined that “we can push forward policies and expectations; we can plan and even predict the future in some of the things we do in the country and with that, life could be better”, which unfortunately, “is not the case presently.”

  He however, revealed that there is a ray of hope when “we learn to start doing the right things” without which “we would always have our information in the wrong way or take decisions without the right information”. 

  He therefore advised that since “the world around us is creating data in millions daily and using them across industries and platforms, Nigerian institutions and government should take advantage of this to improve our economy and governance.” 

  Since we have access to the best applications that can help with data at varying degrees including the big data syndrome, I strongly believe data sharing will impact our economy better and as such we need to start gathering those data in a reusable manner,” he added.


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