Parliament approves $129 million for ZTE deal

By Nana Appiah Acquaye, Accra, Ghana

ZTE Corporation of China has won a bid to supply a Dedicated Security Information System infrastructure to the government of Ghana, following Ghana’s parliament approval of a $129 million agreement between the government of Ghana and the ZTE Corporation of China on Tuesday.

Parliamentarians overwhelmingly adopted the Report of the Joint Committee on Communications and Defense and Interior, which said the agreement met all due diligence requirements. The report of the committee said the Ministry of Communications had diligently incorporated the recommendations of Parliament to protect the interest of the nation.

The contract provides that the Purchaser will conduct technical due diligence and this must be agreed to before the commencement of work.

Parliament’s approval of the contract this time round is going to pave the way for the second phase of the Global Open Trunking Architecture (GOTA) project which was started by Huawei Ghana  in 2007 to build a dedicated Security Information System to be used by the Security services to coordinate security issues and emergencies as well as during big events like festivals and sports.

But Biztechafrica can confirm that some members of the same parliament are not happy with the deal between the government of Ghana and ZTE China. Some of them are puzzled with how this deal has changed hands so drastically from Huawei China to ZTE Corporate China, two competitive giants in the telecoms industry.

Huawei originally initiated the phase of the project by supplying and building the government Dedicated Security Information System infrastructure. Upon completion of the first phase of the project the government of Ghana then contracted ZTE to take over the second phase without any reasons.

Some parliamentarians believe that the government should not have toyed with such a sensitive ICT infrastructure development project regarding the government security set up.

Under the contract, agreement to the project will be financed by the EXIMBANK of China after a value-for-money audit which grants the country the right to determine how the savings will be applied.

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