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Does President Mahama’s SONA on ICT Give Hope?

Ghana’s President, John Dramani Mahama, delivered the state of the nation address at the floor of parliament some days ago.

We at Cranchon.com are taking a look at what the CEO of Ghana said with respect to ICT.

This is what the president said:

PILLAR THREE: EXPANDING INFRASTRUCTURE

“Mr. Speaker, all Ghanaians deserve to live in a country with improved infrastructure, which is inextricably linked to enhancing the quality of life. The viability of private sector investments hinges on a robust and functional infrastructure of roads, rail, sufficient and efficient energy, stable water supply and a seamless communications and ICT infrastructure.

Mr. Speaker, government will use information technology to support infrastructure development, urban renewal, land use management and environmental protection. Mr. Speaker, Ghana was listed by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) as one of the top ten most dynamic performing countries in ICT-for-development in 2011. Indeed, telephone subscription in Ghana reached close to 26million as of December 2012, representing more than double the number as of December 2008.

Government will continue with the positive outlook and promote the rapid development of broadband infrastructure to reach all parts of the country to ensure that the improved connectivity provides better access to health care and health information, opportunities for education and training, transportation, protection of environment and management of natural resources, and to support E-govt to create transparency in government.

In pursuit of this, the work on the Eastern Corridor Rural Fibre Optic backbone network project will be accelerated to add 584 kilometres of optic fibre stretching from Ho to Bawku and linking 70 towns enroute to improve the quality of communications services.

With the ICT sector expanding at such a rapid rate, attention will be focused on measures to protect the privacy of the individual and personal data. We will also develop strategies to counter the growing threats of cyber attacks and other online security concerns and accelerate preparations towards migration from Analogue to Digital Television Transmission.

The Better Ghana ICT Project will be given a major boost this year. We shall commence the distribution of Four Hundred Thousand (400,000) laptop computers to schools and students.” From the President’s address above, how does the young ICT entrepreneur benefit? Has government put in place enough structures to create a leverage for the Ghanaian young software developer or tech entrepreneur to compete with others in other countries such as Kenya, South Africa or Nigeria? Does his SONA on ICT depicts such hope?

We at Cranchon.com think that Ghana can do more than what ‘she’ is boasting of now…However, we commend the president for some interest shown to developing ICT in Ghana.



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