The President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on Wednesday launched Ghana’s digital property address system to much fanfare at the Accra International Conference Centre.
The system which is basically for easy navigation will help in reducing the difficulties in locating people and properties across the country.
Though the President Akufo-Addo stressed on the importance of the new system during the launch and there has been a lot of information in the media concerning the system thereafter, many Ghanaians are yet to grasp what the whole system is about.
YEN.com.gh put together all you need to know about the system, which will be simply known as Ghana Post GPS in the most simplified and clear manner possible
1. What is the Ghana Post GPS?
It is a global addressing system which uses the Global Positioning System (GPS) technology to divide Ghana into grids of 5m x 5m squares and assigns each one a unique address.
It has an application which will allow Ghanaians to validate their home and business addresses in order to create a national address registry for easy direction and identification purposes.
With this system, every land and property in Ghana including undeveloped parcels of land gets a permanent address. So, in the simplest of terms, you can say Ghana has built it’s own mapping system like Google Map.
2. Who built it?
CEO of Vokacom, Nana Osei Kwasi Afrifa
According to the Ministry of Communications, the system was commissioned by the Ghana Post in collaboration with the Government of Ghana and the Ministry, in line with government’s commitment to transform and formalize the economy.
Interestingly, it was designed by a Ghanaian company called Vokacom at a cost of 2.5 million dollars.
3. Who will be in charge and how will it be deployed?
It will basically be deployed by the Ghana Post Company Ltd in partnership with the designers, Vokacom while the National Information Technology Agency (NITA) will support it with hosting.
4. How well built and secured is the system?
In full deployment, the system is said to have the capacity of generating over 16 billion unique codes and Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia is on record to have touted it as one of the very best in the world.
“When we implement it, I argue that it is going to be the most advanced addressing system in the world. We will leapfrog above the United States, Canada, and the UK and have a very modern address system. …Even if you are standing in the middle of the sea within Ghana’s water, we will know your address”, he is reported to have said at a durbar at Nsein in Western Region last month.
5. What will happen to other data collection agencies?
Going forward, all institutions whose activities include public data collection like the National Identification Authority (NIA), Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT), the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA) and would have to synchronise and use the Ghana Post database owned by Ghana Post.
For the NIA, especially, the planned rolling out of its Ghana Card, the card which will soon become the proof of one’s identity as a Ghanaian, in November will be hinged on the Ghana Post GPS as all registrants will be required to have digital addresses.
So you should know that without a digital address, there will be no Ghana Card for you and without the Ghana Card, you will no longer be a Ghanaian.
6. What direct benefits would citizens get?
Apart from making you qualify for a Ghana Card, citizens will now have access to better security and emergency services as the police, fire service and ambulance will not be struggling to find locations of people in distress.
Also, it is expected that since people and businesses can be located easily, the risk of debtors running away after contracting loans would reduce and the banks would subsequently reduce the risk component on their loans and thus make it easier to access credit for your business.
It will also be easier to shop online now and with the expected formalisation of the economy as stated earlier, maybe there will be more jobs for the unemployed.
7. So how do I get to use it and how much do I pay for it?
You can use the GhanaPostGPS on your computer, phone, or tablet to search, explore, and find your way around Ghana.
On your computer, open www.GhanaPostgps.com, on your phone or tablet, use the GhanaPostGPS app and you do not have to pay for anything apart from internet charges.
GhanaPostGPS is live now and it seems like a very good move because if for nothing at all, it will resuscitate Ghana Post and make it relevant again.