By Jimitota Onoyume
PORT HARCOURTâ€” GOVERNMENTS at all levels in the country have been told to embrace Information and Communication Technology, ICT, culture as a guard against wasteful expenditure. Â
Special Assistant toÂ Rivers State governor on ICT, Mr Goodliffe Nmekini, who spoke in his office in Port Harcourt, said the culture would assist government to effectively plan for the state and society.
According to him, it will also make the ghost workers syndrome a thing of the past.
â€œThe ICT is not just all about dealing with ghost workers, it also helps the state to plan and save more money.
â€œFor instance, with just a click, the government will know those within its service that are due for retirement within six months and make adequate arrangement for replacement. With this culture, government is able to do serious budgeting from the plan,â€ he said.
Nmekini said at the moment, ghost workers syndrome had become a thing of the past since the ICT institution was established in Rivers State.
The department which, he said, came on board in the state in April 2008, has trained 1,800 civil servants so far.
He said the state planned to train more civil servants on computer application, adding that arrangements were also on to see how those trained would own their own computers or laptops.Â Mr Nmekini said before now, the state was using public domain accounts but that now, a new state-owned e-mail account had been created.
He said all the ministries also have their e-mail accounts, noting that government had also concluded plans on how to close up the gap between the city and rural people in the state on computer literacy.
This, according to him, the government will do by setting up ICT centres in local government areas in the state.
He said the ICT department also had plans to productively engage youths in the state through ICT knowledge.
â€œThe youths are our future, so this ICT department will come up with a programme for them,â€ he said.