Ghana says open government data portal ready by December 2013

Government is certain to complete an open Government data portal by December 2013 with the implementation of the Ghana Open Data Initiative (GODI) to make Government data available to citizens for re-use.

The initiative will make government more transparent, improve efficiency and spark-off innovation from the demand side for applications to be developed to better serve the citizenry.

Mr. Eric Akumiah, Director of Operations, GODI Project Manager, said this at an executive roundtable for media experts and senior government officials on the essence and benefits of using open data in Accra on Tuesday.

He said in September 2010 Ghana made a commitment to join the open Government partnership, an initiative of the United State Government.

Mr Akumiah said the GODI project would help government to get feedback from citizens on governance and improve policy development. It will also help government to prudently apply its resources.

He observed that for data to be useful, it should be machine readability, complete, primary, timely, accessible, machine processable, non-discriminatory, non-proprietary and license-free.

Mr. Akumiah noted that the project planned to use public education to overcome perceived challenges of data collection and awareness for citizen’s use of data.

He said the Open Government Data programmes around the world had demonstrated multiple benefits such as transparency and accountability, improved public services and economic growth.

“GODI is confident of a vibrant open data community by 2013 with both demand and supply sides very active,” he added.

The programme is to be implemented by the National Information Technology Agency together with Web Foundation and its development partners.

Mr. William Tevie, Director General of the National Information Technology Agency (NITA) told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) that the project would help journalists to improve on their reportage given the availability of data.

He said as part of the project they would teach people how to convert data to readable form, and added that currently it has started with 100-data set.

Dr Nii Quaynor, Board Chairman of NITA, said the project would improve productivity.

Source: GNA

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