Member of Parliament for Mion has lauded the Nana Akufo-Addo government for taking steps to transform the economy to a digital system but has raised concerns about the procurement processes and whether we are getting value for money or not.
Mr. Mohammed Abdul-Aziz said on the AM Show on Joy News TV Wednesday that, it is worrying that in a country of 27 million people only 1.2 million are registered taxpayers according to the records of the Ghana Revenue Authority, only that the process to remedy the situation should be sanitary.
According to the legislator, he listened to some experts on television and he was convinced that the GhanaPostGPS could have been procured for $500,000 instead of the gargantuan $2.5 million that was agreed with VOKACOM, the designers of the digital address system.
Deputy Minister of Communications, George Andah who was also on the show stated that the procurement process was open to all.
He said 26 organizations came with their proposals out of which 6 were shortlisted after which the government settled on the proposal of VOKACOM.
On the cost involved, he dismissed the claim that it could be procured for $500,000 because the government is not just paying for the app but all the processes involved in getting the digital addressing system to every Ghanaian.
“The $2.5 million includes all the services the app will deliver which includes: generation of digital addresses, security systems, use of emergency services and the navigation component. It also includes the cost of the mop up that will be done for those without internet access and the cost paid to google for the use of google maps which is just part of the services delivered by the app and others”, he said.
The Deputy Minister also dismissed Mr. Abdul-Aziz’s claim that the street naming project which will make the user experience better for users of the GhanaPostGPS app, was started under the erstwhile John Mahama administration.
According to him, the street naming was commenced under the watch of the late Kwadwo Baah Wiredu when he was the Local Government Minister in the John Agyekum Kufuor administration which Mahama just continued the good work and gave a deadline for it to be completed.
Even with that, only some 70% has been completed, he remarked.
George Andah touted other steps taken by the Nana Akufo-Addo government to digitize the economy which includes the newly launched smart drivers’ license which is to weed out middle-men popularly called ‘goro-boys’ and some security issues.
He also highlighted the digital National ID system which will be rolled out this month which is expected to serve as a central database for all national IDs.