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The new ICT Standards and Guidelines set by the National Information Technology Agency (NITA) are a good recipe for building a strong and vibrant tech ecosystem in Ghana, said legal ICT consultant Raymond Codjoe.  He was speaking at the recent virtual stakeholder conference organized NITA in Accra, Ghana.

The purpose of the ICT Standards and Guidelines is to ensure the provision of quality information communications technology, promote standards of efficiency and ensure high quality of service. 

The policy also aimed to facilitate the coherence in the MDAs ICT investments and activities, the implementation and monitoring of the national information communications technology policy and the systematic implementation of national information communication technology policy.

Stakeholders had the opportunity from the 1st July 2020 to  21st August 2020. to comment on the Draft Information Communication Technology Standards 2020.

Effective implementation

Codjoe noted that the ICT Standards and Guidelines are guided by the National Information Technology Agency Act 2008, Act 77, and their implementation would deepen regulatory compliance for a successful digitization agenda in Ghana.

When effectively implemented, the ICT Standards and Guidelines will help in addressing issues of fair competition among industry players, drive the growth of the country’s Value Added Services (VAS) space, and ensure a close collaboration between stakeholders and NITA as a policy implementer, Codjoe said.

He also highlighted the importance of a solid policy framework for which government institutions and the private sector can both operate seamlessly.

He said that NITA’s role specified in Section 3 subsection (1.a) of the National Information Technology Agency Act 2008, Act 771 as a certifying agency is currently moving in that direction to ensure a high level of certainty and authenticity of electronic records/database for easy accessibility by both the public and  private sector.

As NITA moves in the direction of fulfilling its mandatory role as a key government ICT policy implementer in the areas of Standardization, Certification, Monitoring and Compliance, it will also aid in building a platform on which different levels of businesses and the private sector can leverage on. “That kind of leveraging is going to have the benefit of reducing the cost for doing business,” he added.

Mapping skilled resources

Contributing to the discussion, Kwame Baah-Acheamfour, the head of the legal and regulatory department at NITA said that starting first quarter of 2021, NITA will commence with the certification of ICT professional and IT firms in the Ghana. Baah-Acheamfour explained that the certification of qualified IT professionals will help NITA to know what skill level of IT specialists available in the country.

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