The chairperson of the London Assembly, Dr Onkar Sahota, has said the Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) smart city campaign can lead to social economic development of the city.The London Assembly is a 25-member body under the Greater London Authority that scrutinises the activities of the Mayor of London. Dr Onkar, who met with the KCCA Executive Director, Dr Dorothy Kisaka, at an annual Uganda-United Kingdom Trade Convention held in London recently, said he was looking forward to the campaign and pledged to partner with KCCA and make it a reality.
“The campaign is captivating because it invites city residents to think differently and think smart. It should not be a copy and paste model from other cities but focus on home grown solutions. For example, you can solve primary health care issues significantly by encouraging the populace to eat organic food which is abundant in Kampala and promote their wellbeing,” Dr Onkar advised. The campaign is hinged on enhancing use of technology in service delivery, infrastructural development and improving people’s wellbeing, under an acronym ‘TIP.’He also encouraged city residents to walk or ride bicycles to improve their fitness levels and stay healthy.Studies indicate that at least 50 percent of workers in Kampala access the city by walking to and from home daily while 30 percent use taxis (public transport), 10 percent boda bodas and 10 percent personal cars. Dr Kisaka said the smart city campaign focuses on the whole person by leveraging the use of technology to ease the way business is done, giving residents online options for city permits, improving city roads and public transport, constructing drainages, walkways and lighting up the city, among others. “We are awakening a collective consciousness about what makes a healthy smart city; the way we talk, act, work, trade and relate. It is a total life focus, an environment where everyone can win,” she said.Dr Kisaka said under people’s wellbeing, KCCA is also advancing sports, cultural entertainment, job creation, minimising noise pollution, and holding stakeholder engagements to mobilise the community for social economic development.