The Administrator of Ghana Investment Fund for Electronic Communications (GIFEC), Prince Sefah, from Thursday, 9th June, paid a 3-Day Working Visit with a technical support team, to some select project sites of the Fund in the Greater Accra and Central regions.
The working visit which was part of efforts to strengthen project oversight and implementation, also afforded him the opportunity to enhance relationships with some stakeholders of the Fund, especially Municipal/ District Chief Executives and traditional authorities.
The tour took Mr. Sefah to five of the 30 newly-constructed Community ICT Centres (CICs) in the two regions.
In the Greater Accra Region, the Administrator inspected the newly-constructed CIC at Dansoman in the Ablekuma West Municipality, which is now ready for commissioning.
In the Central region, the CEO met the chiefs of Awutu Senya, along with the DCE of Awutu Senya West, where he informed them of some GIFEC initiatives within the district, particularly the newly-constructed CIC at Bawjiase and Senya Breku, and the ongoing Ghana Rural Telephony and Digital Inclusion Project (GRT&DIP), and expressed his commitment to ensure these projects are completed and put to use for the benefit of the community by next month.
He also assured that plans are advancing towards adding on to the one GRT&DIP in the Awutu enclave.
He intimated that since inception, GIFEC has provided innovative solutions to ensure universal access and digital inclusion in the remotest parts of the country, and to all marginalised communities of Ghana, through three main ICT programme areas: infrastructural development, equipment and resource provision, as well as capacity building.
He also emphasized the importance of the Cyberlabs programme, adding that the programme is aimed at improving access to ICT by providing ICT equipment to schools, institutions and communities.
GIFEC has so far constructed 274 CICs and equipped about 1,000 schools with ICT equipment to enhance ICT access and digital inclusion, through the programme, he said.
Mr. Sefah stated that the Cyberlabs programme also serves as a resource centre for many of GIFEC’s ICT capacity building programmes, which seek to train various classes of citizens in basic and intermediary ICT courses.
He also touched on the GRT&DIP, which ensures the facilitation and provision of telecommunications infrastructure to communities which are considered unserved or underserved.
These are relatively small communities with low economic viability, hence the inability of Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) to extend their services.
The project, according to him, is being implemented with funding from the Government of Ghana, and partnership from Huawei Technologies, and seeks to establish 2,016 rural sites to ensure 95% mobile network coverage in Ghana.
He said although slightly delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the unprecedented project, since it commenced in 2020, has chalked some remarkable milestones in its implementation. The project has so far been built in 780 communities, with 501 integrated to the core network and 366 on-air and delivering voice and data services to over 120,000 average daily subscribers across various rural communities.
Prince Sefah joined the Green Ghana Day programme at Assin Kushea, by planting some seedlings to contribute to the exercise. He also engaged the media in the Assin North municipality as part of his visit, to apprise them of GIFEC’s interventions within the Assin area and the Central region generally.