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New Socitm chief makes e-gov plea

Fahri Zihni, the new president of the Society of IT Management, has called for greater dialogue between central and local...

Fahri Zihni, the new president of the Society of IT Management, has called for greater dialogue between central and local government as councils push towards making services available online.

Speaking at Socitm's spring seminar last week, he said, "We need a communication platform where the priorities that are seen as important by local government can be discussed in relation to the priorities of central government."

Zihni sees joined-up services as key. "Central government is not moving at the same pace as local government to deliver joined-up services," he warned.

Zihni, head of ITat Wolverhampton City Council, said, "At Wolverhampton we are a pathfinder for e-bereavement services, but we are finding it difficult to persuade the Inland Revenue to work with us because it has a different set of priorities."

A Revenue spokeswoman replied that the department's priorities include delivering e-services that meet the needs of as many customers as possible.

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