Hon. Ursula Owusu-Ekuful cuts sod for the construction of a Community ICT Centre in Asuom, Kwaebibirem District

The Minister for Communications, Mrs. Ursula Owusu-Ekuful (MP) on Tuesday, 2nd June 2020, cut the sod to commission the construction of an ultra-modern Community ICT Centre (CIC) in Asuom in the Kwaebibirem District. The Asuom project is intended to be the first of 30 other CIC projects to set up in other parts of the country within six months. The Ministry of Communications intends to utilize the CIC projects to bridge the digital divide and bring digitization to the underserved and unserved communities within the country.

The Ghana Investment Fund for Electronic Communications (GIFEC), as an agency under the Ministry of Communications leads in the establishment of CICs across the country as part of its deliverables in ensuring implementation of universal access programs.

The CIC projects provides digitization to communities for citizens to have access through ICT to health information and guidelines, educational materials – both academic and non-academic, commerce, entertainment and development information which they can use to improve their livelihoods.

Addressing attendees at the event, Mrs. Ursula Owusu-Ekuful (MP), spoke of disruption the Coronavirus pandemic had caused in the lives of everyone in the world. She further pointed out how the pandemic had clearly demonstrated the vital role of ICT as it facilitated virtual communication for people while social distancing was being implemented to save lives. 

The Minister further said, “The whole world was caught unawares with the scale and intensity of this pandemic which has brought our inadequate digital infrastructure into sharp focus. Ghana is better than most in our region but we still do not have the robust and adequate ICT infrastructure that can provide us with the tools we need to live and work remotely. Some interventions provided by the MOC which have aided our covid response include facilitating the establishment and management of the Emergency Call Centre (112) and the National Information Contact Centre (311), the Emergency Communication System and the Covid-19 symptom tracker App(*769#) to facilitate contact tracing and quarantine monitoring, assisting telcos to zero rate all health and educational sites and provide daily covid alerts to all subscribers free of charge,  providing all public sector workers with tools to facilitate remote working through the Smart Workplace platform which has connected over 200 MDAs and provided them with virtual office functionalities”

In addition, Mrs. Owusu-Ekuful, reminded the contractors assigned to build the Asuom center that they had a deadline of three months and she assured them that their work would be monitored to ensure they met the deadline.

She ended by urging the people of Asuom and all the other 29 benefiting communities to own the project, maintain the infrastructure and cooperate with the contractors and workers in order to enable them complete the work successfully.

The event was graced with the presence of the Asuomhene - Osabarima Ofosuhene Appenteng II, the Municipal Chief Executive of Kwaebibirem – Seth Antwi Boasiako, a few officials from the Ministry of Communications and GIFEC and other community representatives. The number of attendees was restricted in compliance with social distancing guidelines.