Home Advocacy What the launch of CitiMonitor app means for Lagos residents

What the launch of CitiMonitor app means for Lagos residents

CitiMonitor - cleanbuild

The ominous prediction that Lagos, Africa’s most populous city and Nigeria‘s center of economic activities may soon be unliveable due to incessant flooding, has left many residents of Lagos stricken with fear.

Meanwhile, the quest for a cleaner Lagos city initiative has only deepened as the Lagos State Government recently unveiled a CitiMonitor Application and Enterprise Environmental Monitoring Infrastructure Information system (EEMIIS).

Using a citizen participation approach, the government has deployed the “CitiMonitor” app to monitor and report all environmental infractions in the state.

The new app has been designed to bring out the reporter in the average Lagosian, giving them the opportunity to serve as agents.

It will also assist the government to cover more grounds in issues of environmental monitoring, and in the process give real-time conditions of environments across the country.

The Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Tunji Bello stated that it would give the government a wider reach in monitoring and responding to environmental issues reported by residents.

citi monitor

“This app will maximize the reach of the government using the large population of Lagos, it will get to the nooks and crannies and it will help us to better report the state of the environment from blockage of our canals to indiscriminate waste dumping and every other infraction”, he said.

He also added that there are complaints and reports of infractions on daily basis on flooding, damaged roads, dilapidated building, illegal petrol stations, security violations, unlawful human activities, vehicle traffic situations, abandoned vehicles, and other environmentally related issues that are underreported or not reported at all in the state.

What is the significance of CitiMonitor app for residents of Lagos? As a Lagosian myself, I view it as a timely development.

Residents will become responsible for their environment

The Commissioner, mentioned earlier, encouraged residents to take advantage of the new provision and download the app as it would help them take ownership of the environment of the state as the citizens are the primary custodians.

This is even more urgent as citizens are the ones severely affected by floods. As such, all hands need to be on deck to address the cause of flooding- of which waste pollution is foremost.

Environmentally-conscious citizens are empowered

Prior to the launch of CitiMonitor, the Lagos State Government had set up a medium through which residents could report environmental issues in their locality while waste police patrolled the area to arrest offenders.

However, with the introduction of the new application, citizens can make their reports in real-time and get quick results.

Although this may be unfamiliar to the older generations- the grandmothers and grandfathers- they could still make use of WhatsApp, text messages, and other means to report environmental problems around them.

The app serves to bridge the gap between the government and its people, giving residents the capacity to connect directly with the Lagos State government to air their concerns.

A move to address citizens environmental concerns

Nothing impresses the people at the grassroots more than the evidence that their concerns are addressed.

With the recent flooding in various parts of Lagos, countless citizens have taken to social media to vent about the sad state of their environments, calling for the government’s intervention.

The CitiMonitor app is a part of the government’s effort to mitigate environmental disasters which, if not treated urgently, pose a great threat to the future of the city.

At the launch, Tunji Bello who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Office of Environmental Services, Belinda Odeneye, explained that the application, which the state government had been test-running for a while is now available for download on Google Play Store and Apple IOS Store.

He disclosed that some selected officers of the Ministry are already using the app including 25 officers from the State-of-the Environment program. Others are expected to follow suit after the official launch.

Commenting on the app, the software developer, Ayodeji Faniran said, “CitiMonitor” became necessary in line with emerging trends especially in the utilization of science and technology.”

According to him, one of the unique features of the app is that it is configured to capture real-time images within the Lagos geographical locations only.

“You cannot upload pictures from your gallery, you cannot submit pictures from other parts of the country or the world, only pictures from Lagos State can be submitted.

Once you click the picture anywhere in Lagos State, it’s going to have the time stamp, the location/address and then you can pick the local government and the markets. All local governments and markets in Lagos State have been configured,” he said.

Using the CitiMonitor app

Are you a Lagos resident itching to try out this app? Check the following pointers:

  • Download the app on Google Play Store (10MB) or Apple IOS Store (30MB)
  • Sign up with an email or a Google account
  • Once you’re all set up, you may begin to use the app.
  • If you have a complaint, simply click on the plus icon, add a picture or video of the issue you’re reporting. These could range from refuse dumped on roads, natural disasters, or spillage.
  • Having included other information such as location, local government area, select ‘next’ to send your report.
  • For users who don’t want to give out personal data, complaints can be made anonymously.

Currently, the app is configured in the English language, however, Faniran added that plans are underway to introduce other languages, especially the Yoruba language to allow more residents of Lagos to use it.