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By Lance HindsI must say that my ego and general sense of worth and contribution got quite a nice boost by virtue ofLance Hindsthe article I wrote last week on the potential of ICT to play a significant part in the development of Guyana,Stitched Buffalo Bills Jerseys, and the brief introduction to some of the policy-related measures that should be introduced to move the nation in the required direction.Warm kudos were liberally conferred, along with the encouragement to continue the ‘good work’ and ‘keep pushing’. I did, however, get a few gentle, and not so gentle raps on my knuckles. Some of my colleagues said that while they noted and appreciated that I mentioned that over the years there have been encouraging signs as regards ICT development, they felt as the saying goes,Andre Burakovsky Jersey, that I should have put some “more meat on that bone”.Naturally I threw the Kaieteur News under the bus, saying that if I had my druthers I would take two, nay three pages extolling the goodly works done in ICT locally to date, but that I was constrained by the condition that I had to find a way to deliver my perspective effectively and efficiently within a certain amount of words. The editors felt that I was a bright boy and therefore should be able to achieve this goal quite easily and with the least amount of fuss.My colleagues of course, made a show of being sympathetic about the extreme challenges that I face, but happily insisted that more be said about the kind of work that has been and is being done locally, regardless of the limited space, real or imagined, that has been allotted to my good self. They,Blake Swihart Jersey, like Kaieteur News, felt that I should be able to do that.It would also be remiss of me not to mention that at the end of our lengthy conversation on this matter, I had to pay the food and drinks bill as a result of what they perceive is my ‘reticence’ in providing the information that is necessary. In the interest and protection of my wallet, therefore,Authentic Baltimore Ravens Jersey, I will proceed to give, in the word of my dear friends, ‘jack he jacket’.There is no question that there has been a tremendous amount of work done and significant initiatives achieved in ICT in our native land over the years. In the financial sector, banks and other financial institutions have long automated their day-to-day processes and related operations. The Bank of Guyana is now in the process of implementing an automated clearing house. In the private sector, many businesses use off-the-shelf and customized software to support their accounting, HR/Payroll,Brad Kaaya Jersey, and in some cases, distribution and manufacturing processes.A lot of significant ICT-related implementation has been done on the government side as well. For example the Ministry of Home Affairs, now Public Security, has an extensive Integrated Crime Information System that supports the data collection, workflow, decision support and statistical reporting required from the time a member of the public reports a criminal occurrence, all the way through investigation, suspect identification, arrest, case preparation, and possible incarceration.This system is distributed over a private data network that facilitates access by police ranks and related staff to all the police stations nationally. The office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) has a Prosecutors’ Information Management System. The pride in this application stems from the fact that it has been written from the ground up by local IT professionals (very, very broad hint).The Ministry of Finance has a government accounting system that is accessible by the other ministries in transaction inputs and reporting. The Guyana Revenue Authority is now in the process of implementing the second generation of its Tax Administration Information System to even further support its tax collection and customs management operations. This application is also distributed over private data networks.The Ministry of Housing uses an enterprise level Land Management Information System to manage its housing schemes, allocation of house lots, community development services, infrastructure projects, and the processing of building permits.The Ministry of Public Infrastructure,Antoine Bethea Jersey, Natural Resources, and Housing have all implemented Geospatial information-related solutions to support their technical staff in their planning and decision and policy-making operations. The Land and Surveys Commission continues to increase the amount of maps that are available in industry-standard electronic formats.This, however, is when I start the gentle pushback against my colleagues. We are now in the year of our Lord, two thousand and fifteen. Therefore, while I accept the achievements highlighted above, and daresay that I have been part of quite a few of them, we have quite a ways to go in the successful implementation of ICT as a significant tool for the development and advancement of our society.There is a need for harmonization. Too much work is being done in individual silos. The ministry and agencies mentioned have all invested in separate private data networks in order to achieve their ICT goals. This is not cost effective and needs reviewing. It is critical that a government-wide network be created.The Minister of Public Infrastructure made the most instructive point at a public forum on Thursday, that there is simply no need for five agencies working on national geospatial initiatives. A central repository must be established for more effective management of geospatial and other government information. We will discuss the need for effective document management and storage in subsequent articles.I will not belabour the need for telecommunication liberalisation. We have been informed that it is high on the legislative agenda. It is important, however, that significant attention is paid to the creation and functions of the regulatory agency that will exist after the passing of the revised Act. Matters of effective spectrum management and policy, the application and utilisation of the Universal Service Fund, and the admission of new entrants, will require well thought-out planning and comprehensive solutions.I advise my colleagues that discussions relating to this vital cross component of our national development will continue along with the articles. I suspect, however, that I may use Skype just in case there is another nefarious plan to get me to buy lunch.Lance Hinds is the President of the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry. He is also the Chief Executive of the BrainStreet Group, an Information Technology and Content Development Company.
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