The Ghana Chamber of Technology is appealing to the Government of Ghana to develop and implement a comprehensive digital response strategy to manage the impact of COVID-19 on the continuity of business and government operations.
The Chamber is also advocating for the utilisation of digital tools and channels for social activities, business, and financial transactions.
In line with this, the Chamber has urged the use of e-commerce platforms for purchase fo consumables, payment apps, and fintech apps for the transaction of business, email, the use of applications like Skype, Zoom, Google Talk, Whatsapp for social interactions.
Following the possible increase of digital and activities on the web the chamber has advised the Populus to practices safe internet usage “In view of the expected rise in internet traffic, we advise people to practice safe and secure internet usage practices to avoid being compromised.”
Coronavirus spread in Ghana
Ghana has so far detected six cases of the novel coronavirus in Ghana, all of which were imported.
Four new cases were announced on Sunday, with three of the cases recorded in Accra while one other was recorded in the Obuasi in the Ashanti Region.
So far, 151 people have been identified as persons who came in contact with four out of six individuals who have been confirmed with the novel coronavirus.
Following the announcement of the new cases, the government announced new public gathering advisories.
Educational institutions across all sectors have been asked to close down effective Monday, March 16, 2020, for the next four weeks.
Concerts, workshops, sporting events and all religious events have also been banned.
Find below the full statement
The Chamber of Technology has observed the consequences the WHO-declared COVID-19 pandemic is having on countries all over the world. We are following the Government’s management of the Virus keenly, and we are currently satisfied and applaud the proactive actions being taken by the Government of Ghana to curtail and contain the spread of the Virus. The Chamber of Technology acknowledges that current developments may affect the social and economic lives of Ghanaians.
We urge all to remain calm and to adhere to the Government’s directives on how to deal with the Virus.
We believe digital technology offers all stakeholders a tremendous opportunity to bolster efforts towards the management of the spread of the virus and minimise its impact on the social and economic lives of Ghanaians.
Subsequently, the Chamber is making the following recommendations:
1. We appeal to the Government to develop and implement a comprehensive digital response strategy to manage the impact of COVID-19 on the continuity of business and government operations.
2. We admonish all people to adhere to strict positive hygiene practices and social distancing recommendations put out by the Government and health experts
3. We strongly encourage people to utilise existing digital tools and channels for their social activities, business and financial transactions. For example, We strongly advise people to explore the use of:
- Digital platforms to access government services such as passport applications where possible.
- Payment Apps and Online Banking Platforms offered by fintechs and banks for their financial transactions.
- Ecommerce platforms for the purchasing of their consumables and other needed products.
- Email, Chatting and Messaging apps such as Skype, Zoom, Google Talk, Whatsapp for their social interactions.
- Actively use digital news and information dissemination portals and platforms such as blogs, social media and official sites of national agencies, local and international organisations and credible news sources to update themselves on the Virus.
4. We advise that businesses work with technology experts to develop and implement business continuity and digital response plans to ensure customers have unhindered access to critical services.
5. We encourage all businesses to publish their business continuity plans and make them easily accessible to customers.
6. We advise businesses to offer flexible remote working capabilities to their staff to enable them to work outside the offices.
7. We encourage health facilities to develop and implement capabilities for people to reach out to them via digital channels on health-related (especially COVID-19) issues where possible.
8. We encourage educational institutions from the tertiary to the basic level to develop and implement education continuity plans to ensure students can have access to continuous learning tools and resources.
9. We encourage all religious institutions to explore the use of digital tools and channels to congregate and conduct religious activities.
10. We encourage people to use digital avenues to conduct conferences, meetings and events that require the gathering of people.
11. In view of the expected rise in internet traffic, we advise people to practice safe and secure internet usage practices to avoid being compromised.
12. We appeal to the Government to explore all possible avenues to provide some business stimulus or incentives such as tax credits and funding support to enable businesses to implement business continuity plans.
13. We also implore the Government to explore every constitutional tool available to strongly deter businesses and retailers from taking advantage of this dire situation to hike prices and hoard consumables and other products.
The Ghana Chamber of Technology would support and work with all stakeholders in all efforts to find solutions to manage the spread of COVID-19. Our members are available to assist businesses and individuals to develop and implement workable digital response plans to ensure quality social and business continuity in all aspects of our society.
Ghana Chamber of Technology.