2nd Feb 2023, Kathmandu
Local government’s 5-year digital strategy, Is ‘technologically friendly’ becoming a new requirement…?
Time has brought us to a point where having some social or financial knowledge is a practical necessity. So we are currently missing something from moment to moment if we do not have some basic digital knowledge.
Let us now discuss local government
Local government is perhaps the best gift of federalism. The decentralization of power in Nepal has been at its best in the last five years. Whereas development and construction have also been promising. There are some exceptions, but we believe that these will be addressed in the newly constructed structure.
We are forced to use digital technology due to corona. We now know that compulsion has compelled us to use technology to some extent, or that technology is like this.
This is also why, it appears, campaigns to digitize local government work and information have begun immediately following this year’s local elections.
In this year’s local elections, the slogan “smart city” was barely heard. But we are living in a very different reality than we did about five years ago. This is fantastic news.
The awareness that local government services and facilities should be brought online has grown significantly – this is, of course, the first step; the second step is to map out a path to create a digital municipality, which we call a digital roadmap. The blueprint is at the end of this article.
Some municipalities have developed digital technologies to provide services and information in the past. Some municipalities in Nepal have set excellent examples, but most municipal efforts appear to have been futile: – due to a lack of a proper roadmap or visionary plan…
Nepal should make the digital leap as soon as possible. For the past five years, we have been practicing from Himal-Terai, East-West, and Rural Municipality to Metropolis. We are conducting research, developing appropriate technology, implementing it, and redeveloping the feedback we have received. While doing so, our goal is to develop technologies that can be used on Nepali soil.
Our goal is to communicate the findings to policymakers and stakeholders.
Not only that, but we are also preparing resources for the types of laws or regulations that the local government will require to implement good governance and other systems.
We developed the Local Government Digital Transformation Roadmap by combining our experiences, experts, and responses.
This roadmap has been published here because it may be useful in developing the municipality’s City Budgeting – city plan or rural municipality:
Local Government Digital Transformation Roadmap
The digital roadmap should be developed on the specifics of the municipality’s current situation.
The first step should be for the municipality to create its profile. Many municipalities have created their objective status or Palika Profile in the past. And some have also created a Digital Local Government Profile.
Following that, the municipality must prepare a Digital Transformation Roadmap using ICT Experts, Consultants, or its resources, based on the municipality’s geography, Digital Nepal Draft Indicators, digital literacy, and other indicators.
It is necessary to create a framework, such as an integrated electronic governance system (ERP) and other systems, including interactive mobile apps for the public, in the first year of the five-year tenure.
How to update the data in the municipality’s profile, including households, how to use the data safely, how to maintain privacy if a third party seeks access, or what kind of relationship will exist between different ICT systems, what kind of data can be exchanged between these systems, and ownership of the data by the municipality Including how to receive, how to manage the Nepal government’s server, including the municipality, the most important thing is data security, and how to handle disasters, the municipality will be able to open a safe door for the future use of the ICT system.
The executive can approve the regulations and prepare them for the next round.
Following that, some services can be implemented on an annual basis using the governance system or mobile apps. Such as – for the real estate tax paid by the people, an arrangement can be made so that the people can pay at home or abroad. or the recommended works to be done in the ward can be given using some mobile apps and digital signatures.
As much as it is necessary to develop technology, it is also necessary to have public awareness of it. In addition to annual ICT plans, the municipality should put in place implementation plans.
To improve the effectiveness of such plans, local tolls, youth clubs, and other smart clubs can be used. The municipality is also providing excellent opportunities to the youth in this manner.