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Practitioners urged to embrace GIS technology

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Experts have urged estate surveyors and valuers to embrace the Geographic Information System (GIS) for easy access to locations and features of properties.

A professor of Geography at the Kampala International University, Uganda, Seyi Fabiyi, and a GIS expert, Mr. David Afolayan, gave the advice during a boot camp organised by GIS Konsult, Ibadan, where the participants comprising students were challenged on ways of finding a solution to human settlement problems.

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The experts explained that GIS tool enables lending agents to know the owners of property before accepting the property as collateral for loans.

Prof. Fabiyi, who is the GIS Consultant for Ibadan Urban Flood Management Project, said, “You can’t continue to run from place to place searching for available buildings. The problem is that there is no database.

“We are deploying an electronic property management system for the state’s Ministry of Lands. By the time we are through with it, Ibadan will be fully captured and have information about properties.”

According to him, the availability of the database makes it easier for practising surveyors, valuers, property managers, even banks and lending agents to know the owners of any property.

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He added, “GIS is the major tool people have been using all over the world to solve land administration and property management issues. In Ibadan, we have established three GIS laboratories with all the complementary hardware and software so that all the properties can be registered with their building footprints. It will show the owners of the building, the location of the building, and the type of use. By the time we finish the project, Ibadan will have the capacity to really manage every single property.”

Afolayan said, knowledge of GIS, helps to identify properties that are within flood-risk areas, and those that are susceptible to diseases spread.

“It will help the government to develop adequate policies for mitigating problems. Part of the solutions we are looking for is to get an application that the general public can click on, and find out information about property whether is at risk and the kind of risks it is exposed to and to know if it is worth it to acquire a piece of land or not in that location.”

“It helps property managers to be able to understand where to invest in and see how their property appreciates over time. That is a major thing that the GIS technology has made possible, and that is what we are deploying”, he stated.

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