Ghana’s 112 Emergency Phone Line Project initiated under the John Dramani Mahama administration has won Ghana Investment Fund for Electronic Communications (GIFEC) the 2017 World Champion in ICT applications.
The 112 Emergency Phone Line Project, also known as the Emergency Response System (ERS – 112) is a contact centre system developed to serve the emergency needs of the Ghanaian public.
The objective of the ERS otherwise known as the Public Safety Assembly Point (PSAP) or the 112 system, is to establish a single point of contact that consolidates the emergency services of the Police, Fire Services, Ambulance Services and NADMO.
The system eliminates the inefficiencies occasioned by the operation of disparate emergency response systems by the various institutions thus enabling emergency respondents to attend to emergencies promptly.
This system has one toll-free three-digit number (112) associated with it so that any emergency call, regardless of the type of emergency situation, the call would flow through a central location.
The 112 Emergency Phone Line project was last week exhibited by GIFEC at the World Summit Information Society (WSIS) Forum held in Geneva, Switzerland, and it was adjudged the winner in the E-environment category.
The John Dramani Mahama administration identified the need for an efficient all-encompassing national emergency response service and worked assiduously to achieve it resulting in the world recognising that feat.
Meanwhile, the Ghana Investment Fund for Electronic Communications (GIFEC), under the John Dramani Mahama administration, has also rolled out 54 Rural Telephony Project (RTP) sites to help extend the coverage of wireless mobile telephone services to rural communities nationwide.
The project was a collaboration between GIFEC, Ericson and mobile telecommunications giants MTN, at a cost of $12 million.
GIFEC in collaboration with Ericson and MTN earlier in the year 2016 signed a Memorandum of Understanding to construct 55 sites using the GIFEC model and a further 25 sites under the GIFEC Satellite HUB project launched in Accra last week.
GIFEC spearheaded the acquisition of land permits, while MTN is the service provider with Ericsson supplying the infrastructure and maintenance support.
The construction of the masts under the project is aimed at improving the communication coverage in the country.
The ultimate objective of the project is to achieve virtually 100 per cent mobile telephone service coverage throughout the country, and to also increase telephone subscribership to as many citizens as possible.
The purpose of the Rural Telephony Project is to extend the coverage of wireless mobile telephone services as far as possible into all areas of the country where access to such services is not adequately available, and where existing licensed operators have proven unwilling or unable to expand their networks, due to commercial, geographical or other constraints.
The project required the installation and operation of appropriate network and infrastructure although the precise configurations for each location and project were technology-neutral and determined on a case-by- case basis.
The criteria for the site selection and implementation of the RTP project include a formal request by the communities or villages with no existing services from the operators, communities with population of one thousand (1,000) or more, areas where the Mobile Network Operators (MNO), would ordinarily not go but yet need connectivity and through requests from relevant stakeholders.