ANEEJ Calls on FG to invest more in Artificial Intelligence, e-Governance
…Urges Edo Govt to Re-visit Work on FOI
BENIN CITY, EDO STATE. September 28, 2022… The Africa Network for Environment and Economic Justice (ANEEJ) has called on the federal government to invest in Artificial Intelligence and e-Governance to improve transparency and accountability in the management of public funds and tackle insecurity in Nigeria just as they want the Edo State Government to re-visit the draft Edo State Freedom of Information Bill prepared during the first term in Office of governor Godwin Obaseki.
The Executive Director of ANEEJ, Rev. David Ugolor, in a special message to mark this year’s International Day for Universal Access to Information said the Federal Government should equally take steps to protect the privacy of its citizens even while investing in Artificial Intelligence and e-gGovernance.
Rev. David Ugolor urged the federal government to fully operationalize some of the e-governance initiatives it has initiated such as the Nigeria Open Contracting Portal (NOCOPO) among others, and invest in artificial intelligence to block the leakages in public resources while also protecting the privacy of citizens.
On the quest for a Freedom of Information law in Edo State, Ugolor emphasized that it will make public information, records and documents more freely available to citizens of the state and lauded the Governor Godwin Obaseki government’s e-governance initiative in the state.
“The proposed Freedom of Information Law will also make Edo State one of the States in Nigeria to fully domesticate the Federal Government’s FOI law, a beautiful component of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) which the Federal Government signed unto during the London Anti-Corruption Summit in May 2016 and the Edo State Government signed onto in 2019,” Ugolor noted.
He emphasized that the FOI Act is built on the premise of openness and transparency of the government as it enables citizens to access information that is of public interest, and we urge Governor Godwin Obaseki to replicate same in Edo State.
It could be recall that the 74th UN General Assembly proclaimed 28 September as the International Day for Universal Access to Information (IDUAI) at the UN level in October 2019. This was in recognition of the significance of access to information. The day had also been proclaimed by the UNESCO General Conference in 2015, following the adoption of the 38 C/Resolution 57 declaring 28 September of every year as International Day for Universal Access to Information (IDUAI). The theme for this year’s event is “Artificial Intelligence, e-Governance and Access to Information.”