Ghana’s E-government

Ghana recently announced in a stakeholder consultative meeting the establishment of it’s country’s first e-government efforts directed towards eleven different departments and agencies. The departments involved in this project will include “the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, the Accra Metroplitan Assembly (AMA), the Food and Drugs Board (FDB), the Birth and Death Registry, the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), the National Communications Authority (NCA), the NationalInformation Technology Agency (NITA), the Passport Office, the Minerals Commission and the Registrar-General’s Department” (Ghana.gov).

Ghana’s e-government program will focus on online payment for government services, a document management application, and improving the availability of government-related matters and information online. Leaders of this project hope to implement management and information-distributing systems for the justice, government procurement, parliament, immigration, and passport sectors of the government. Eventually, there will be a free flow of information between the public, service providers, government departments and agencies.

While this is an important step for Ghana’s governmental development, undoubtedly contributing to a more accountable and transparent political system, certain vital developmental needs, similar to those discussed in class, still exist in this African country that deserve attention as well.

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3 responses to “Ghana’s E-government

  • ccrowle1

    It’s interesting to see new e-government undertakings in this region and in the developing world in general- while not every nation or developing nation has identical challenges in implementing e-government programs, it makes me wonder if challenges undertaken later on (after other developing nations and have variably succeeded and failed) will see more success or more rapid success, after witnessing other nations’ struggles with implementation.
    For example, South Africa saw open source translation software develop in the midst of their years-long development of successful e-government implementation. Now that open-source software has become more commonplace throughout the world, and translation pages have been successful and easy in the past, I wonder whether such they (and other impetuses) will be quicker to arise in countries like Ghana, where the undertaking of e-government is just beginning.

  • ssimon1

    I think all of this E-government development is great in theory, but it seems like the countries that are undertaking such projects are ones that should be first focusing on their own physical infrastructure and examining the transparency of their governments. It seems like creating a complex internet portal is silly if a large percentage of the population doesn’t even have regular access to high-speed internet. ICT4D is great and has allowed many poor countries to leapfrog steps in development, but I think E-government, in many cases, should not come until a higher level of development has been achieved.

  • mariahvb

    I think this is a positive step forward in Ghana! In terms of making the infrastructure available for such projects, I’ve noticed that in instances where countries were able to partner with businesses and foreign investors, they’ve been able to compensate for the lack of access to resources such as wi-fi and high speed internet.
    Even in developed countries such as the US, there are many places that are still unable to use wifi. However, with the availability of broadband satellite and other new technologies, spreading the availability of the internet and e-government services becomes much easier. The way that I see it, e-governance can be used as a tool to increase transparency, as ICTs have done throughout the development of even the US.

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