Undoubtedly, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) is a key driver of social and economic transformation, because its application enhances efficiency and effectiveness in services delivery.
With the application of ICT, we are able to store data and have quick access to information for decision making.
We have witnessed an appreciable level of installation of ICT infrastructure in the country, and its application has hastened the pace of national development.
That notwithstanding, there is more room for improvement in our ICT application in public service delivery.
The Ghanaian Times is particularly concerned about poor quality of ICT service that is militating against the two major registration exercises: The National Identification exercise for the issuance of the Ghana Card and the limited voters’ registration that has just ended.
We understand a number of people have not been able to register in the limited voters’ registration, due to challenges of the system, which has to do with the poor internet connectivity.
As a result, there are calls for the extension of the registration for the benefit of qualified electorates who could not still get their names captured in the voters’ register, due to no fault of theirs, but because of the challenges with the system.
There are similar complaints of people spending so much time, and in some instance almost a whole day, queuing to register and obtain the Ghana Card.
We hear people go to the registration centres at dawn to queue, and that is creating inconvenience, as people have to go and eke out a living.
Indeed, this is affecting productivity in the public sector, as people have to take time off their schedules to go and register for the card.
Already, the Ghanaian worker is noted for low productivity, a bone of contention in the tripartite committee deliberations for improved condition of service for the worker.
We still remember the famous saying in the public sector “Ghanaian worker is pretending to be working and the government is pretending to be paying.”
The recent United Nations human development index report suggest that though the Ghanaian worker productivity level pegged around 44 per cent, is one of the best in the sub-region, it is still low for a middle-level income country.
Ghanaians spend a lot of time in gridlock, resulting in man-hour lost in productivity. We spend much time queuing for “Trotros” at lorry stations during rush hours.
Again, we waste time in banking halls to cash our moneys. We queue to buy tickets to enter the stadium to watch matches. We queue to consult the limited doctors at the health facilities. We queue to register on to the National Health Insurance Scheme.
It will not be an over exaggeration to say that life in Ghana is all about queuing and time wasting.
The ICT has been invented to facilitate our lives, but it appears it comes with its own challenges of internet connectivity.
We commend Ghanaians for their positive responds to the national registration exercises and we plead with them to exercise restraint at the various registration centres.
The Ghanaian Times urges stakeholders in the ICT industry to endeavour to find lasting solution to the challenges facing the application of ICT in the country, for enhanced service delivery.
We also urge the Electoral Commission to consider the various appeals for the extension of the limited registration for qualified Ghanaians to get registered.