The Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, has revealed that the country is making significant progress in the fight against corruption following the digitization agenda of the government which is being implemented.
The Vice President said this when he delivered a lecture on the State of the Economy last week at the National TESCON Conference held in Kasoa.
According to him, one of the reasons for embarking on a vigorous digitization drive is to reduce human contact in public service delivery in order to considerably minimise the risk of bribery and corruption in the system.
“Our approach to improving the delivery of public services is to minimize human contact as much as possible. Therefore, we embarked on an aggressive digitalization of the processes of service delivery across many public institutions with coordination from my office,” Dr. Bawumia said.
The digitization process, Dr. Bawumia noted, has made a significant impact on efficient public service delivery, boosted revenue and also helping in the fight against corruption in many sectors.
The Vice President provided detailed accounts, with figures, to prove how the minimised human contact through digitization, has reduced corruption and significantly boosted government’s revenue mobilization at the DVLA, ports, passport office, motor insurance, etc.
At the Passport Office, for instance, Dr. Bawumia revealed that digitization of the passport application process has resulted in less human contact and a major increase in the number of passports processed annually as well as the revenue yield to the passport office. “In 2017 the passport office processed a total of 16,232 applications with revenue of GH¢1.1m. In 2021, the passport office received and processed 498,963 online passport applications with a total revenue of GH¢56.7m.”
“Digitization has dealt a severe blow to corruption at the Passport Office,” Dr. Bawumia added.
At the ports, the Vice President also recounted how previously, the bureaucratic processes in the clearing of goods involved a lot of paperwork, delays, corruption, inefficiencies, frustrations and loss of revenue to government.
“Many citizens who had cleared goods at the country’s ports had horror stories about their experiences at the ports,” he said, adding that: “the introduction of a paperless port system has reduced the layers and simplified the process, reduced the time needed to clear goods and the avenues for corruption and increased efficiencies and revenue mobilization at the ports.”
“Customs revenue has increased from GH¢10.3 billion in 2016 to GH¢16.1 billion in 2021. Digitization has clearly reduced corruption at the ports.”