ASIDE terrorism, one main issue facing
the world today is environmental
degradation. The United Nations
International Strategy for Disaster
Reduction characterizes environmental
degradation as the lessening of the
limit of the earth to meet social and
environmental destinations and needs.
They are those activities that render
the environment unhealthy and
unsustainable over time.
At the point when the environment
is wrecked or common assets are
exhausted, the environment is
considered to be corrupted and harmed.
Environmental degradation takes
diverse forms, ranging from pollution
and destruction of ecosystems to
degraded fresh water supplies and
arable land.
Globally, the size of the human
population has grown exponentially
and with population boom, we require
more land, more water and more of
Forests have almost disappeared
because we needed to clear them to
plant more crops, to give animals a place
to graze and to supply us with wood and
other raw materials. The advancement of
technology and industry has worsened
the condition. Vehicle emissions, toxic
waste, carbon emissions – all emit
toxins into our atmosphere, causing air
pollution. These are all by-products of
our inventions and ingenuity. This is
what is causing Global Warming.
There are many effects of
environmental degradation, which the
world is contending with today. First and
foremost is the impact on human health.
Areas exposed to toxic air pollutants
can cause respiratory problems like
pneumonia and asthma. Millions of
people are known to have died due to
indirect effects of air pollution.
The other is loss of Biodiversity, which
is important for maintaining balance of
the ecosystem in the form of combating
pollution, restoring nutrients, protecting
water sources, and stabilizing climate.
Deforestation, global warming, over
population and pollution are few of the
major causes for loss of biodiversity.
Ozone Layer Depletion is also another
side effect of environmental degradation.
Ozone layer is responsible for protecting
earth from harmful ultraviolet rays. The
presence of chlorofluorocarbons, hydro
chlorofluorocarbons in the atmosphere

is causing the ozone layer to deplete. As it
depletes, it emits harmful radiations back to
the earth.
The tourism industry equally suffers
from environmental degradation as
deterioration of environment can be a
huge setback for tourism industry that
relies on tourists for their daily livelihood.
Environmental damage in the form of loss
of green cover, loss of biodiversity, huge
landfills, increased air and water pollution
can be a big turn-off for most tourists.
As the commercial and industrial hub
of Nigeria and, indeed, West Africa, Lagos
naturally runs the risk of environmental
hazard. Despite efforts being put in
place to sensitise residents on the need
to protect the environment, some still
prefer to continue to live in the past as
they still get involved in actions capable
of frustrating government’s investment in
the sector.
It is with a view to bringing up a
more dynamic and holistic approach
to environmental protection that the
Lagos State has come up with a new
intervention it terms the Cleaner Lagos
Initiate (CLI). The initiative, which has
been backed up by law is to address some
of the challenges of human default.
The CLI is a strategic government policy
and programme aimed at revitalizing the
entire Solid Waste Management sector to
have far reaching benefits and multiplier
effects for the state and the country at
large. Through this, direct 40,000 new
dignified job will be created and civic
pride and creation of sense of belonging,
ownership and patriotism in resident will
also be created.
This effort is driven to protect the
environment, human health and social
living standards of Lagos residents
and re-focused the scope of LAWMA.
As individuals, there are many things
that we can do to save our planet, our
environment and, indeed, ourselves.
We must understand and let others also
appreciate that the survival of future
generation depends on how we treat the
environment. So, for Lagos residents, this
is the time to join hands with government
in a renewed commitment to preserving
the environment.
Durosinmi works for the Lagos State
Government since 2000. The internet
economy has grown larger and faster than
could have been reasonably expected back
then. In future, technology, connectedness,
the internet-of-things all promise a more
efficient, fast-paced economy set within
an accessible global market. But how can

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Africa really harness all this change to its
For a long time, ‘creativity’ and
‘innovation’ in technology were only latent
concepts in Africa in general, and Nigeria
in particular, until the dawn of the digital
age. ICT plays an important, valuable and
critical role in education development.
Its usage has become very common but
its full potential is yet to be discovered.
Nigeria’s JAMB is now playing a critical
role in ensuring that Africa maintains
its pride of place in the Global ICT arena
with a particular reference to education.
It is heartwarming to see that fact
that developing countries have now
understood the importance of ICT and
have started adapting to it as a basic tool
for quality education.
The trailblazing credentials of JAMB
experienced a surge with the coming on
board of Professor Ishaq Oloyede, who
has accelerated reforms at the institution
and fast-tracked innovation. JAMB is
applying ICT to areas that no one would
have thought possible.
The ICT mediated examination
innovation by JAMB, which replaced the
Paper and Pencil Based examination system
that was fraught with problems of accuracy
and delay in timely results’ declaration is an
effective tool for integrating and automating
the activities of examination system to bring
reliable, efficient, transparent and robust
e-examination solutions for Africa..
JAMB, especially under Professor
Oleyede, has increased its institutional
capacity and credibility since the
introduction of the CBT in 2015. Determined
to make the Computer Based Test all
inclusive to different category of candidates
with disabilities, JAMB embarked on
nationwide training for visually impaired
on the use of Apex Braille-note computer.
This is quite commendable.
The Apex Braille-note computer is an
electronic devise invented by the Board
to enable visually impaired to take the
Computer Based Test without stress like
a normal Unified Tertiary Matriculation
Examination candidate.
The machine is affixed to a desktop
computer and questions are deployed to it
electronically with hearing aid. No fewer
than 200 visually impaired participants
in the training held at designated venues
across the nation; namely South West
Resource Centre in Abeokuta, Lagos , Kano,
Enugu and Port Harcourt.
It is a good thing that the parliament
through the Nigerian House of
Representatives committee on Education

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has thrown its weight behind the JAMBs
ICT drive with reference to the Computer
Based Test (CBT) when it said the electronic
test was in tandem with global dictates to
sanitized the education system. “The paper
Pencil Test (PPT) was cumbersome and
characterized with several irregularities and
unwholesome activities. The world is flying
and we cannot be crawling”. The Chairman
of the Nigerian House of Representatives
committee on Education Hon. Zakari
Mohammed was quoted to have said.
Thus, if the Board’s major objective is to
completely eliminate malpractices through
the conduct of CBT, it may as well have
achieved it because the CBT has to a large
extent eliminated malpractice in the Board’s
examination process. As with everything
good, there are those who will lose because
of the elimination of malpractices. These are
the people that pick holes in the reform and
tend to highlight the few teething issues.
Irrespective of how much such people
try to make a mountain out of a molehill,
JAMB could compete auspiciously with
any examination body in the world
considering its innovation in digitizing
its examination. The innovation has now
restored confidence and integrity in its
examination process. With the pace of the
current Registrar, the body is set to become
a global reference point.
From its application to obviously
mundane tasks to its use for the noblest of all
human endeavors, the place of information
and communication technology (ICT) in
today’s world cannot be over-emphasized.
The fate of individuals, businesses and
countries largely depends on how fast they
latch on to the ICT revolution and stay
ahead in the game. It is the 21st Century
equivalent of the scramble for land and
territory most races of humankind have
been involved in from ages past.
Against the backdrop of the importance
of ICT to the present era, the effort by the
Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board
(JAMB) which has now phased out the
use of the paper and pencil method for its
examinations in favour of computer-based
tests, is not only a commendable step in the
right direction, it is also a pointer to the fact
that Africa and indeed Nigeria is playing a
very crucial role in global ICT revolution.
A disquieting percentage of graduates in
the country today are not computer literate,
thus, making them unemployable. This
wouldn’t have been the trend if all critical
stakeholders in the education string had
been proactive in espousing ICT, specifically
in testing candidates over the last two
decades. The contemporary workplace is

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ICT-oriented and anyone not trained in
this direction is hopelessly unfit to take
on many tasks in the corporate world,
which can only get more sophisticated,
as technology is being daily improved to
work more for the human race
Embracing ICT for providing the
robust, transparent, accurate and
authenticated outputs as we have
witnessed with the JAMB innovation
brings substantial quality improvement
in education and this needs to be
extended to other examinations in the
Nigeria’s JAMB has taken the lead.
There is no gainsaying the fact that ICT
will make exam system more efficient
and transparent. This will produce
competent human resources, which
will contribute to the development of
the country. The development at JAMB,
which fully digitized and modernized
most of its operation is the way to go and
should be rolled across others facets of
the education sector.
Nigeria and notably JAMB has been
highly successful in creating a modern
ICT supported examination platform.
Learning the lessons from JAMB, while
also understanding the breadth of the
application of ICT is valuable for broad
goals of a smart country and the quest
for efficiency. This is because the success
story of JAMB’s ICT drive will enable
Nigeria and Africa to compete in a global
technology economy, developing its
own tech-enabled businesses, content,
applications and services.
A consensus has been built around the
fact that today is the era of technology
which is resulting in changing the life
style of people. Today many African
institutions are imparting education
in the field of ICT, but its application
in the functioning of the system is low.
The meaning of computerization is
limited to just typing or surfing web;
full potential of ICT has not been
explored. ICT is a useful tool to have
transparency, reliability and efficiency
in examination system. There are
tremendous facilitations integrating ICT
with examination system. JAMB’s ICT
innovation from what we have seen will
ensure efficiency and effectiveness in
the examination system and effectively
deals with malpractice and inefficiency
thus bringing about the much needed

Clement is a medical practitioner at the
Harvard University and contributed
this piece from the USA.