Dependable Power Supply Crucial to Achieving Smart City Project ―FG

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CHEAP, clean and dependable power supply is the bedrock of any smart city project, the Federal Government on Tuesday said.

The Nigerian Smart City Project is an IT innovation designed by the FG to ensure a digital-based economy for the country.

The Minister of Communications, Barr Adebayo Shittu stated this in Abuja at a briefing on the forthcoming “Smart Cities Nigeria Summit,” slated for 8th and 9th, August, 2017.

Shittu stated that the non-availability of constant power is a major challenge for any smart city initiative in the country.

“We know that going smart would not be easy. In fact, it is a huge challenge given the lack of critical infrastructure in the country.

“Our world is becoming more globalised, interconnected and intelligent. The systems and technologies that underpin so much of how the world works are smarter. We live in a time of unprecedented advances in every sector of human endeavour. In the ICT industry of developed economies alone, we are seeing the coming of age of a whole new generation of intelligent systems and technologies, more powerful and accessible than ever before.

“Unfortunately, the same cannot be said of our country. We are wrestling with both an infrastructure gap, after years of underinvestment and an innovation gap from poor innovation performance in the business sector over the years.

“Improving both is essential to improve our fundamental economic prospects. By linking infrastructure and innovation, we in increase the potential to help close both our infrastructure gap and our innovation gap,” he said.

He further noted the importance of effective broadband penetration and affordable data service stressing that: “The Nigerian ICT Road Map 2017-20200, the National Strategic Plan 2016-2014, the broad band policy and the new power sector reforms of this administration, are some of the ways government intends to address these challenges.”

He expressed the country’s readiness to embark on the project even as he disclosed the FG’s plans to launch ‘The Smart City Challenge’ among cities and States.

According to him, the ‘Smart City Challenge’ is aimed at encouraging Local Governments, Cities and State governments, to take revolutionary steps by embracing digital technology.

He added that details of the competition and prize money will be made public at a later time.

Consequently, he explained that the two-day multi-stakeholders international summit slated for August will address the country’s level of preparedness, challenges and emerging solutions to ensure sustainability of the project.

He added that: “the summit will offer huge business opportunities for providers of smart city technologies to exhibit and pitch their solutions and products to Federal, States and Local

Governments top officials and private real estate developers who are all expected to attend the summit.”

Source: Nigerian Tribune

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