By Chris Ochayi

ABUJA – President Goodluck Jonathan has announced the readiness of his government to curb the rising insecurity in the country with the use of high resolution imageries to locate any suspicious changes on the landscape.

President Jonathan who made the remarks while declaring open the 27th FIG (Working Week) International Surveying Congress in Abuja, said high imageries like Geo-Eye, Quick Bird, Ikonos or digital globe would be deployed to tackle the challenge of insecurity,

The theme of the week-long international event which attracted participants from across the globe, was “Environment for Sustainability.”

The President who was represented by the Minister of Works, Arch. Mike Onolememen declared that  “the policy trust of my government as entrenched in the transformation agenda as well as the vision 20:2020, the global Millennium development Goals, MDG’s and land reform programmes are expected to receive impetus from the sustainable, fast, reliable and effective service delivery on the part of surveying and mapping sector through efficient acquisition, storage, processing and management of geospatial data and responsive dissemination of geo-information.

“These contributions are critical to solving numerous contemporary challenges facing Nigeria today including: security through location of suspicious changes on the landscape using high resolution imageries such as geo-eye, quick bird, ikonos or digital globe.”

He said the move will also address mapping for delineation of flood plains and inventory of all susceptible features within them. Wealth creation/revenue generation through effective land administration practices by using improved delineation and identification of properties for taxation/tenement purposes using urban aerial photo derivatives will also be addressed.

Other issues to be addressed include: erosion monitoring and control using high accuracy digital elevation models (DEMs); coastal encroachment monitoring using laser-based imageries to overcome constraints arising from cloud cover and forest cover as part of disaster and emergency management of ocean related hazards, Infrastructure planning, design, development and conservation through route surveys, right-of-way, ROW surveys and hydrographic position fixing.

He regretted that Nigeria as a maritime oil producing nation lacks technical and human capacity in hydrographic surveying  due to the lack of any approved course recognized by FIG/International Hydrographic organisation advisory board at category A or B in the West African sub-region or even African as a whole.

“I wish to therefore use this opportunity to request that FIG should help to establish and develop or select and upgrade existing training facilities to a centre of excellence in hydrography. It will also be appreciated if FIG can advocate that relevant donor agencies like the international Oceanographic Commission should assist Nigeria in establishing a network of real-time disaster ready tidal stations for monitoring and early warning services in case of marine hazards or related emergencies.

Also speaking, the President of the   International Federation of Surveyors, Mr. Cheettai Teo underscored the importance of networking in making surveying profession meet the needs of the people, particularly those at the grassroots level.

Teo who noted that surveying profession thrives on precision, however urged all members to uphold ethical values in the profession with a view to achieving value for money.

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