The Network of Communication Reporters (NCR) in commemoration of this year’s World Telecommunication Day, has congratulated Ghanaian women who have blazed the trail in telecommunications and ICT development in the country.
In a statement signed on Thursday by Charles Benoni Okine, Dean of the Network to mark Day, the Network said the achievements of the women called for institutional encouragement of more girls to acquire telecommunication and ICT knowledge for the benefit of the country.
It named women like Patricia Obo-Nai, CTO of Vodafone Ghana, Estelle Akofio-Sowah, CEO of Google Ghana, Ann Amuzu, CEO of nandimobile.com, Sheila Bartels-Sam, CEO of inchargeglobal.com, and Florence Toffa of Mobileweb Ghana Foundation as some of the few Ghanaian women.
The Network, therefore, proposed a national scholarship scheme for young girls, who want to study Telecoms/ICT Engineering in the country where telecoms and ICT industry players can collaborate with educational institutions to provide such a support.
It also called for support to less educated women who are already in the industry but does not benefit from the many value offerings by the telecoms/ICT industry to improve their businesses.
The Network also acknowledged that Ghana had more enough reason to celebrate the day, especially given the progress the country had made in the sector. The country has six multinational telecom operators, four submarine fibre optic cable landing on our shores, with a fifth one on its way; and several Internet Service Providers (ISP’s).
The World Telecommunications and Information Society Day is set aside by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and the UN General Assembly to celebrate the founding of the ITU, signing of the first International Telegraph Convention in 1865, and to focus on the importance of ICT and a wide range of issues related to the information society.
The theme for this year is: “Women and Girls in ICT”, which obviously seeks to throw the spotlight on achievements by women and girls in ICT and how women and girls could also benefit from ICT in the businesses and studies.
The Network said Mobile penetration is over 80 percent; tele-density has crossed the 90 percent line; internet penetration is around 6-7 percent, which is low but compares favorably with the rest of Africa.
The industry is on record as paying 10 percent of national income tax, contributing two percent of GDP, directly employing some 6,000 Ghanaians and 1.5 million indirectly; and driving efficiency and growth in the service sector on the country.
This, the Network said, had been possible first of all through the formulation and implementation of the right policies, which created that attractive environment for the multinationals to come in.
It therefore also congratulated the Ministry of Communications (MOC) and the industry regulator, National Communication Authority (NCA) for their visionary policies and effective policy implementation over the years.
We also congratulate the telecom operators for believing in the economy and investing heavily to make mobile telephony a way of life for Ghanaians.
NCR is group of seasoned Ghanaian journalists who aim among other things to bring together communicators with interest in telecommunication and ICT reporting, and equip them with skills in the sector to be better educators and informers. GNA