Tomorrow Is Here, Says Fashola As Citizen Relationship Management And Performance Dashboard Goes Live
May 8, 2015 - Following the live demonstration of the Citizens Relationship Management and Performance Dashboard Systems on Thursday before a select audience the day before, the Lagos State Governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola, SAN on Friday formally flagged off the "GOLIVE" operation of the CRM platforms which is aimed at reducing the stress and cost that residents go through and incur in the quest to secure service from the government.
The Governor who spoke at the Banquet Hall of Lagos House, Marina added that the services to be provided on the Citizens Relationship Management system platforms is commencing with 11 agencies immediately and would run from Mondays to Fridays between 8am and 5pm for now.
He explained that the programme was starting with 11 agencies because the partners of the State Government have designed all of the enquiries that people would have asked for if they come physically to Alausa by converting them into digital form.
"If the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) tows your vehicle, for example and you want to make a complaint, there are certain things you would do when you get to the LASTMA office. We are creating that in digital form and putting it into your hands and in your homes. If you need a form, you can fill it online," he explained.
He reiterated that agencies like the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority(LASTMA), Lagos Internal Revenue Service (LIRS), Lagos State Waste Management Authority, the State Electricity Board, Public Works Corporation (PWC), the Lands Bureau and the Ministry of Housing.
He said that another set of 14 agencies are almost ready and would be added very soon, while the processes would continue until all the agencies and services that Lagos provides is covered and included on the platform.
The Governor stated that the initiative is about open governance and stepping into the future today because the generation behind the current one would perhaps be the greatest beneficiary as time goes on.
The three different access points are the web based application by members of the public, going online to fill forms for services which may ordinarily have necessitated coming down directly to Alausa and calling through the Toll Free 767 line to the Command Centre while the address is services.lagosstate.gov.ng.
The Governor explained that the State also intends to use technology to manage congestion and ensure that people do not get out of the house, make road trips and spend money unless it is absolutely unavoidable.
He added that many people travel long distances, burn fuel, put themselves under stress and generally exacerbate even their own cost of living when simply a telephone call would have solved the problem.
According to the Governor, with the successful take-off of the programme, the future is here now and most remarkably it is in the hands of the young people saying it is about the generation that moves and encourages another generation to take over.
"That is why for those who still don't want to talk on the phone and prefer eye to eye contact, that is a different generational problem and we would allow them to do it the way they are comfortable but we know that for your generation and the next one, this is it. That is why I say the future is here and we are doing so many things on the phone now and the phone themselves are changing", he said.
He expressed the hope that the new platforms would also assist just as the Traffic Radio is managing movement for people, the LASTMA managing traffic and the street lights with a combination of all of those solutions making travelling experience better for those who need to be on the road.
He acknowledged that there were challenges before the state reached the present milestone but that one of the first things that the administration undertook was street naming and house numbering, promising that the Government would continue and complete it since the data generated therefrom helps in the provision of services.
He explained that one of the strategies adopted by the administration to prevent people from travelling only to come and ask for information from public servants was to publish his telephone number, his email address and that of his cabinet members and other top government officials.
The Governor said the citizens owe it a duty to engage the platforms for reporting observed incidents because if left unreported, the system itself will not detect and report it.
While praising some media organizations particularly the TVC and Channels TV for creating platforms similar to the one just launched by the State, the Governor also urged media organizations to educate the members of the public about what the system is all about.
He explained that currently the two Toll free lines of 767 and 112 which the State Government designated as emergency lines are also been used by members of the public in need of services such as people who want their refuse moved or a water tap that is malfunctioning and wasting water thus making it absolutely impossible to restrict its usage to that emergency purposes.
He added that following attempts to secure a different line from the National Communication Commission (NCC) solely for services which did not materialize, the State has now decided to make do with the 767 as the line that is solely available for services as well as emergencies henceforth.
"We have toll free lines 767 and 112 and we were trying to get another line to dedicate to it, these are also some of the problems we also had because people were always calling the 767 or 112 and those were emergency lines and they started turning them into services lines".
"Now we cannot have people stay on the phone for services when the difference between whether we can save a life or not is only a matter of seconds and this is why we are moving to this and this CRM service would be on the 767 number only. Although, the 767 would continue to operate as an emergency line", he explained.
He disclosed that the service also has two points of access which are the internet access for those who have internet connectivity which is quicker and telephone access for those who do not have internet access but that takes some time largely because there is a need to be able to identify who is making the calling and other necessary details.
He said such task would have been easier if such a person is registered with Lagos State Residents Registration Agency (LASRAA) as it would automatically bring up all the personal details of such a person.
The Governor appealed for patience on the part of residents and citizens because the fact that they have lodged a complaint does not mean that the complaint will be solved immediately saying the complexity of the complaint will vary from time to time.
He emphasized that for all those who patronize the platform, the important thing is that with the unique ticket number that was generated for them, they can follow up the process and see that something was being done.
"If you get on to the system, all that you would normally have done physically, the person taking your call would also take your data which is very vital to us so that we would know where the service is needed exactly. Once you entre that system you would get a unique number which become your reference number. Even if you don't get response, you can track what is going on there", he stated.
"What this also does for us as a government is that all of these details would be visible to me, to the Commissioners to the Head of Service and would be visible to all the heads of the agencies so that we can now track those who are not working because we would know now that a complaint has sat in a mailbox and no action has been taken".
In an interactive session with some senior journalists which was also part of the launch, the Governor said the issue of illiteracy cannot be an inhibition to the successful operation of the programme because even unlettered people have learnt how to use mobile phones and that for such people, they would always get able hands to assist them.
On how secure the application is, the Governor gave an assurance that the operating system of the CRM is robust and that all the safety valves that modern science can conceptualize are embedded in the new platforms.
He reminded citizens that would make use of the service to be sure that work that can be dispensed with in one week should not be expected to be completed in two days, adding that what this means is that it would take the normal cause that such action was supposed to take before action is concluded on it.
Speaking earlier, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Science and Technology, Mrs Nike Animashaun said the Citizens Relationship Management is a tool based solution that is leveraging on the 767 number and is a non-emergency number that is now available to all those desiring service from the State Government.
She added that it would enable government to plan and deploy government capacity more efficiently so that it can address issues that citizens may be agitated over and respond to such issues.
Also speaking, the Director General of the Office of Transformation, Mr Toba Otusanya said his Office worked very closely with the Ministry of Science and Technology which was a dream come true as it concerns efficient service delivery.
According to him, the State has been able to expand the services available unto the platform and would be working closely with the Ministry of Science and Technology in the coming months to be able to migrate the MDAs unto the platform.
The Senior Director, Public Sector , Middle East and Africa, Microsoft, Mr. Yasser Elabd in his goodwill message, commended the resilience of the Lagos State Government to get the best for the State and ensure that the state is a safe modern city where everybody want to live and where businesses flourish through the application of the CRM .
The Governor was joined at the CRM "Go-Live" event by members of the staff of the Ministry of Science and Technology and its agencies including the General Manager of the Lagos State Residents Registration Agency, LASRRA, Ms Yinka Fashola and the Director-General, Office of Transformation.