Communications Minister, Edward Omane-Boamah, last Monday inaugurated the Inter-Ministerial Oversight and Technical Committees of the eTransform Project.
The $97 million eTransform Project is a World Bank sponsored project aimed at supporting Ghana's on-going effort to improve the efficiency and coverage of government service delivery using Information and Communication Technology (ICT).
Delivering a speech at the inauguration on Monday November 26, 2014, Dr Omane-Boamah noted that The e-Ghana project was essentially designed to focus on:
"1. Improving the enabling environment for ICT and increasing the competitiveness of the ICT sector in Ghana.
"2. Providing support for ICT/ITES and increasing employment and income generation in the ICT sector.
"3. Providing support for e-Government applications to improve on the efficiency and effectiveness of government service delivery."
He said in the course of the project cycle and to expand the scope to meet Government priorities and new beneficiaries, additional activities were included during its mid-term review (MTR) in 2010.
This according to the Communications Minister, included the Ghana Integrated Financial Management Information System (GIFMIS) Project with the view to ensuring enhanced efficiency and effectiveness in the use of public funds.Issued in Accra on Thursday November 24, 2014.
The major accomplishments of the e-Ghana project are:
i. Introduction of Key legislations to improve the enabling environment for electronic applications in order to increase the competitiveness of Ghana’s e-economy in line with global best practice and to protect and secure investment in the ICT sector.
In all, 8 pieces of legislations and 3 regulatory instruments were developed.
ii. Deployment of e-Applications including Automation of the Ghana Revenue Authority and Registrar General’s Department, e-Immigration e.t.c.
iii. The on-going development of a BPO centre in Accra to create about 10,000 jobs, when completed. This project is also supported by the Rockefeller Foundation.
iv. The establishment of a business Incubation Centre at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology
v. The project also nurtured the growth of the local ITES industry in Ghana. At project conception, the industry was nascent. Today, the industry illustrates growing performance. Export revenues in the IT-enabled services sector have risen from US$32.5 million in 2010 to US$72 million in December 2013.
vi. Lowering cost of bandwidth. By 2014, market prices for E1 bandwidth has dropped to US$1,200 per month, down from US$10,000 in 2007, at the inception of eGhana project.
He said in order to consolidate the gains made under the eGhana Project, the US$97million facility was secured from the World Bank to implement the e-Transform Project over a five year period to improve the efficiency and coverage of government service delivery using Information and Communication Technology (ICT) as a major driver of President Mahama’s socioeconomic transformational agenda.
The project among others consists of:
i. Enabling environment for electronic government and business;
ii. scaling up applications to improve service delivery in priority sectors in e-Health, e-Education, e-Justice including the Ministry of Justice and Attorney General Department, e-Immigration e.t.c.Issued in Accra on Thursday November 24, 2014
With the cooperation of the stakeholder Ministries, the Parliament of Ghana and the World Bank, the loan became effective in September 2014. The project’s closing date is put at June 30, 2019.
As part of the transformation process, this project will focus on employing ICT-based interventions, relying on prudent and efficient use of resources to advance shared and accelerated development in priority areas of Ghana’s development.
The project will also employ platforms to nurture new businesses, create job opportunities and promote entrepreneurship.
This e-Transform project places Ghana at a higher level of digital sophistication. Hence the need to integrate the Interministerial
Committee into the management of the project for strategic guidance and policy coherence.
The Interministerial Committee will also have the responsibility of ensuring that the Project Development Objectives are achieved in good time, and it will take key decisions to guarantee smooth implementation of the project.
Dr Omane-Boamah said the Technical Committee with representation from related sectors/units and the key beneficiary institutions, among others, will meet on regular basis to prepare quarterly and biannual briefs of implementation progress as determined in the Project Implementation Manual.
"The implementation of these interventions requires that must work hard to achieve the desired objectives for the benefit of the Ghanaian", he said.
Dr Omane-Boamah stated that the success of the eTransform project will largely depend on the level of commitment and cooperation between all stakeholders in the discharge of our roles.
He therefore entreated the Committee to work assiduously as a team for the success of the eTransform Project.
The composition of the Inter-Ministerial Oversight Committee is as follows:
i. Hon Ato Sarpong, Deputy Minister for Communications (MoC, Chair)
ii. Representative of Ministry of Finance (MoF)
iii. Hon. Dr Victor Bampoe, Deputy Minister for Health (MoH)
iv. Hon. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, Deputy Minister for Education (MoE)
v. Hon. Dr Dominic Ayine, Deputy Minister of Justice and Attorney General (MoJAGD)
vi. Mr. Issah Yahaya, Chief Director of MoC
The Inter-Ministerial Oversight Committee is chaired by the Deputy Minister for Communications, Hon Ato Sarpong.
The Technical Committee will be chaired by the Chief Director of the Ministry of Communications.