Assist govt to shape Ghana’s digital future - Ursula Owusu-Ekuful charges public institutions

BY: Joshua Bediako Koomson & Abigail Sedinam Kortiah
Assist govt to shape Ghana’s digital future - Ursula Owusu-Ekuful charges public institutions

The Minister of Communications and Digitalisation, Mrs Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, has urged public institutions and agencies in the country to come on board and assist the government to shape the country’s digital future for the better.

According to her, it was only with a united front that the country could attain its digital transformational agenda.

Mrs Owusu-Ekuful was speaking at a cross-sectoral digitalisation readiness workshop organised by the ministry for some key government institutions in Accra yesterday.

The workshop sought to engage officials from the various ministries to start the Digital Assets and Services Register and the Digital Readiness Assessments initiatives, both under the Ghana COVID-19 Alleviation and Revitalisation of Enterprises Support (Ghana CARES) “Obaatan pa” programme.

The Digital Assets and Services Register is a platform that establishes a database and register of all government digital assets and services as a reference platform and management framework for improved access and management.

The Digital Readiness Assessments, on the other hand, is a platform for conducting a digital readiness and skills gap assessment of all government institutions and operationalisation of the Public Sector Learning Management System.

Efficient services

“We are short-changing ourselves if we don’t look at the way we work in the public sector to enable us to facilitate our collaboration with the private sector. You need to look at how you can capitalise on digital technology to improve your efficiency and enable the government to deliver more efficient services to the citizenry,” Mrs Owusu-Ekuful said.

She indicated that technology was only as good as the people implementing it, and that as leaders of the various sectors, the onus was on them to set the tone for full commitment to the digital drive.

Government’s efforts

The Head of the Ghana CARES Delivery Unit at the Ministry of Finance, Mr Kusum Appiah, said the government was poised to revitalise the economy, support businesses and create jobs.

For that reason, he said, a contract had been signed between the Ministry of Communications and Digitalisation and the Ministry of Finance to accelerate digital transformation in the country.

To ensure sustainability to further enhance the programme, he said, the various ministries had been instructed to nominate two leads from within their ranks to work with the ministries and conduct the readiness assessment within each of their respective offices.

“We are looking to establish the baseline in terms of digital assets and services and also how ready the institutions are to help us put in place initiatives to raise the readiness and track how we are moving and progressing with that,” Mr Appiah said.

Another initiative

He said another initiative was the regional digital innovation hubs which were being set up across the country.

Already, he said, some of the hubs were working, while work was still ongoing on the remaining few.

“We are looking to retool and grow those hubs, so that entrepreneurs, SMEs and even small business within those regions can tap into the services that we will be providing for them, such as digital literacy, skills and training and also access to equipment and digital services that they would need in order to build their businesses and for us to support them in that,” Mr Appiah said.