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Business News of Sunday, 13 May 2018


Software developers ‘rock brains’ at 2nd Blockchain Hackathon

Software developers and technology experts met at the i- Space center, Osu on Saturday, 12 May 2018 to share innovative ways through which Blockchain technology can help transform businesses in Ghana.

The event which was organized by the Ashesi D:Lab, Blockchain Society in Ghana, Kumasi Hive and Devless saw several tech organizations collaborating to explore Blockchain as a potential application to a supply chain project that the Ministry of Trade has embarked on in partnership with the Association of Ghana Industries.

The program saw inspiring teams from all over Ghana come together to design and pitch a Blockchain-inspired solution for a supply chain platform for the Ministry of Trade and Industry.

The platform is to enable buyers (large scale contractors) to engage suppliers (sub-contractors and SMEs) in an exchange arrangement that ensures that buyers needs are met while supplier capacity is enabled.

Team leader for industrial sub-contracting and partnership exchange for the Ministry of Trade and Industry, Papa Kow Bartels, in an interview with Ghanaweb said the collaboration is aimed at establishing a link between the small and medium scale enterprises in connection with the large scale in order to help them grow.

He said the supply chain when completed will not only create jobs for Ghanaians but also be a source of wealth for the youth.

‘’What the ministry is trying to do is to get small and medium enterprises to become a part of the whole enterprise space of the large scale enterprises so that we are ‘Ghanaianising’ so to speak the import that goes into the production of large scale enterprises and in that process we would also be creating jobs as well as putting money in the pockets of Ghanaian people especially the youth.’’

According to the co-founder of Blockchain Society in Ghana Cecil Sena Nutakor, Blockchain technology is a database system which makes it almost impossible to re-edit information that is entered.

He stated that Blockchain is the future and it’s necessary to adopt this system because it can improve lives as well as present business opportunities in Ghana.

‘’With Blockchain it uses a lot of electricity especially if you have a lot of nodes… so to build your own nodes in Ghana and encourage people to connect to mine that means you need to have a lot of computation power and a lot of electricity,’’ He noted.

The Founding Lead of the Ashesi D:Lab, Associate Professor at Ashesi University, Dr. Gordon Adomdza on his part indicated that the Hackathon series was set up to bring people together to do research in some specific areas so as to enable people solve 'wicked' problems.

‘’We came up with a number of programs for hackathons to bring people together to do research in specific areas and go out and build something. So our first hackathon in the series is the Blockchain Hackathon where we have the opportunity to use the MOTI supplier exchange program as a kind of analogy to help bring people together around the concept of how you apply Blockchain to Supplychain problem.

At the event, participants were required to form a team of like-minded individuals and develop Blockchain-inspired solutions to present at the hackathon for support. They were also to focus on specific problems and come up with solutions that will help the Ministry of Trade and Industry create jobs and enrich the pockets of the unemployed youths in the country with the use of Blockchain technology.

Asumah Eric, a member of the Blockchain Society in Ghana is however encouraging Ghanaians to embrace the Blockchain technology because it’s a very powerful tool.

He revealed that ‘’Blockchain is the future that is going to help us create decentralized organization. Blockchain technology is a decentralized distribution larger and once it is deployed it distributes itself on a network, it will not take effect if one makes a change without consensus, it is a very powerful tool and a technology we need to grab as immediate as possible.’’