Business News of Monday, 18 March 2013
Source: Graphic Business
The local subsidiary of a leading Chinese telecommunications equipment manufacturer, Huawei Technologies (GH) S.A. Limited, has been chosen as the implementing contractor for section one of the second phase of the e-government project.
The project, which envisages the complete computerisation and rollout of online information technology-enabled services to all public sector agencies, will be executed on turn-key basis to the government of Ghana.
It is also to allow the deployment of software applications to improve the performance of the various government departments and agencies on the platform.
The $70 million project being undertaken with funds from the China Exim Bank will also help to automate the various offices to enable them to deliver e-services such as e-Health, e-Cabinet, e-Justice, e-ID, e-Transport, e-Tourism among other things and was implemented by the National Information Technology Agency (NITA) under the Ministry of Communications (MOC).
Huawei has already successfully completed the first phase of the project at a cost of $30 million. During this phase, Huawei provided a wide area network (WAN) covering all 10 regional capitals, as well as Tarkwa, Obuasi, Tema, Nkawkaw and Winneba.
The company has also provided a Local Area Network (LAN) infrastructure carrying 6,300 ports for government offices, while all ministries in Accra have been linked by fibre optic cables, among many others.
In the e-government project phase II, Huawei is expected to upgrade the Worldwide Interoperability for Wireless Microwave Access (WiMaX) network, a wireless communications standard designed to carry heavy data, to Long Term Evolution (LTE) network, an advanced form of the present network in terms of data transmission speed.
The company is also expected to extend the Metro Area Network to include more MDAs and increase network resilience. It will add additional 8,000 port Local Area Network infrastructure throughout the country and build a secondary Data Centre and integrate with the existing Primary Data Centre.
Huawei will also setup 25 additional Tele-presence facilities to connect the departments; build a call centre, build 2 one-stop service centres; and create two Communication Information Centre.
It will further will set-up office automation, build web portals for MDAs, set-up a Correspondent Management System; pilot e-Heath Solution for three hospitals such as Korle Bu Teaching Hospital, Zebilla District Hospital and Wa Regional Hospital, as well as set-up a Tele-Medicine Solution.
To ensure the delivery of quality services for these solutions, Huawei will subsequently conduct periodic training activities for the handlers of these equipment and solutions.
According to the company, “Huawei’s focus is not just on business. Our vision is to enrich life through communication and this is reflected in both our commercial and corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives”.
At a day’s workshop for participants from the Ministries, Department and Agencies MDAs in Accra, the Minister of Communications, Dr Edward Omane-Boamah, said. “It is the government’s objective to ensure that the improved network connectivity provides better access to healthcare and health information, opportunities for education and training, transportation, protection of environment and management of natural resources, and also create transparency in government.”
The workshop, which was organised with support from Huawei, Microsoft and IPMC, was on the theme; ‘Improving Government Employees Productivity and Services through Innovative Technologies and Optimised Process Management’.
It has been the government’s objective to ensure that the improved network connectivity provides better access to healthcare and health information, opportunities for education and training, transportation, protection of environment and management of natural resources and also create transparency in government.