Ghana’s telecom sector needs a new ICT policy – Prof. Darkwa
By Nana Appiah Acquaye, Accra, Ghana
The President of the Ghana Technological University College, Prof. Osei K Darkwa, has called for a new ICT policy for the country, saying the current policy governing Ghana’s telecoms industry is obsolete. He believes this has become necessary for the country’s thriving telecommunication sector following evolving trends in the tech space globally.
Speaking exclusively to Biztechafrica on the sidelines of the MTN Apps Challenge Awards Night held in Accra, Prof. Darkwa stressed that the country needed an IT policy that emphasised what mobile apps and apps in general could do. “I know the current policy has little to do with apps; that is why we need an IT policy that give Ghanaians that apps orientation. The emphasis is important and how we can use apps in all sector of the Ghanaian economy," he said.
The President of the Ghana Technological University College also called for the abolition of the practice where students in the country’s Junior and Senior High School are not allowed to take mobile phones to school. He then described that practice as a bad policy that need to that policy has to be reversed to stimulate the creative among our youths. “We know in European countries kids are developing apps and commercializing the apps for millions of dollars unlike here in High Schools you couldn’t send mobile phones to school because its bad, that’s a bad policy that policy has to be reversed to stimulate the creative among our youths.
He said the development and usage of apps plays a very crucial role in the development of every country and since it is the future, there is the need for Ghana move in that direction to catch up and be competitive on the global technological space.
According to him for the country to move forward there is also the need for government and other stakeholders to initiate projects that would stimulate the creative and innovation among the youths. “We can have an apps academy, we have soccer academy and all that why can’t we have an apps academy? People go there sole to learn how to develop apps of various categories,” he added.
The government of Ghana in the year 2003 came out with the Ghana ICT for Accelerated Development (ICT4AD) Policy with an objective of transform Ghana into an information-rich, knowledge-based and technology-driven high income economy and society. The policy which has been implemented so far by two successive governments and still in operation also intends to develop a high competitive ICT –led value added and export-oriented services sector driven-led by a dynamic ICT services sub-sector and industry.
Although the policy had gone through some reviews little has been done to ensure its strict implementation by the ministry in charge of communication in Ghana.