Economic Recovery Largely Depends On Digitalisation – Osafo-Maafo

Senior Presidential Advisor Yaw Osafo-Maafo, says Ghana’s economic recovery and transformation agenda hugely depends on the extent of government’s digitalisation drive’s permeation into the country’s public institutions.

As a result, the Office of the Senior Presidential Advisor presented information technology equipment and accessories to three public sector institutions as part of efforts to digitise the public service to increase efficiency and speed up the country’s COVID-era recovery under the Public Sector Reform for Results Project (PSRRP).

The institutions are the Driver and Vehicle Licencing Authority (DVLA), Public Services Commission and Ministry of Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development.

The World Bank-funded PSRRP is a four-year programme launched in August 2018 to enhance public service delivery to the citizenry and private sector. It also seeks, among others, to reverse the decline of institutional quality and management effectiveness in Ghana’s public sector.

The items presented to the DVLA included a desktop card printer, card print device, signature pads, fingerprint readers and cleaning swab kits, valued at GH¢8,312,121.

The Public Services Commission, on the other hand, received video conferencing equipment, 75’ smart television, laptops, colour printers, digital camera, server racks, among other items valued at GH¢552,635.

The Local Government Ministry also received laptops, colour printers, a projector and wireless router valued at GH¢104,312.

Addressing officials of the DVLA last Friday during the presentation, Mr. Osafo-Maafo said the equipment was procured to help the beneficiary institutions effectively execute their activities and speed up the country’s economic recovery.

“The economy develops because we must move goods and services. That’s where transportation is key. Since our main source of transportation is by road, agencies like DVLA are key to the growth of the economy. If the means of transportation are not efficient, the economy cannot be run efficiently.

“So, we want to tell management of the DVLA that they have a great job at hand…because for the economy to work safely, your role is paramount; and therefore in modern times we need to modernise, we need to be competitive. You cannot modernise using old equipment,” he stated.

For him, the private sector can only function properly when public sector delivery is efficient.

“We want the public service to be oriented along these lines, that they will provide service to the private sector to make money for the economy to grow,” Mr. Osafo-Maafo added.

Chief Executive Officer of the Public Sector Reform Secretariat, Thomas Kusi Boafo, said the PSRRP implementation covers 13 selected entities – constituting Ministries, Departments and Agencies – with a US$32m credit facility from the World Bank.

Urging beneficiary institutions to use the equipment effectively and make a case for more support under the Project, he said implementation of the PSRRP is expected to bring about significant changes in the delivery of selected services in Ghana; especially in accelerating remote/digital/electronic delivery of key public services.

Heads of the three institutions thanked the Office of the Senior Presidential Advisor and pledged to put the equipment to good use.