Digitisation should improve public services: analysts | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, February 19, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, February 19, 2019

Digitisation should improve public services: analysts

The country needs result-oriented digitisation so that the citizens get satisfied with the public services they are receiving, analysts said.

They spoke at a workshop on “Innovations in public service delivery” organised by Brac Institute of Governance and Development (BIGD), at Brac Centre Inn in the capital yesterday.

As the economy is growing fast, people now need effective public services to gain success in the future initiatives, said Professor Atiur Rahman, a former governor of Bangladesh Bank.

“It does not matter how many services are provided. Only public satisfaction matters. So, the government has to ensure quality public services.”

Rahman called for a citizen service protection centre in every ministry, division and public service provider's office, allowing people to share their user experience with the authorities directly through a hotline.

“It may improve the quality of public services.”

The government has initiated e-procurement, union digital centre, village court, e-mutation system and so on as part of efforts to improve the quality of public services, Planning Minister Abdul Mannan said as the chief guest.

The e-procurement system has opened the opportunity for everyone to take part in the government's tender process, he said. “It has also reduced violence in the tender system.”

The minister said they have to work more for the e-mutation system—a digital process where the legal records are updated in case of any change in land ownership—as it is very important for the rural people.

In the workshop, BIGD researchers presented four papers on e-mutation, e-procurement, village court and union digital centre as these were identified by Copenhagen Consensus Center in collaboration with BIGD as priority projects.

Insufficient manpower, underperforming employees and lack of willingness to adopt technology are the main reasons for delayed and faulty services provided by the land offices, BIGD showed in a paper.

The researchers of BIGD recommended that more focus should be given to upgrade the quality of e-mutation services in every upazila and union.

“However, this would yield good result only if manual mutation service is completely replaced and land registration is digitised and integrated with mutation.”

BIGD also wanted the village court act to be revised so that the political influence of the village court's chairperson is reduced.

Rasheda K Chowdhury, executive director of the Campaign for Popular Education; Mustafizur Rahman, project director of Access to Information; Ishtiaque Siddiqui, senior procurement specialist of World Bank, and Sardar M Asaduzzaman, national project coordinator of United Nations Development Programme, also spoke.

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