Plans are far Advanced to Ratify the Convention on Cybercrime – President Akufo-Addo
The President, Nana Addo Danquah Akufo – Addo says plans are far advanced to ratify the convention on cybercrime adopted by some countries of the United Nations including Ghana.
Being the third African country to sign on since its adoption, the law after ratification will guide the country to develop strategies to fight cyber attack. It will also help the country set up a cyber security academy as well as a National Cyber Security Authority to oversee the operations of all agencies in the digital value-chain.
The President was speaking at the climax of the Cyber Security Awareness and a Safer Digital Ghana Campaign Month at the Kofi Annan International Peace Keeping Training Centre at Teshie in Accra.
He added that “As a government, We have signed both the Malabo and Budapest Convention which sets the tone for Ghana to implement initiatives on cyber security. I’m happy to announce that when parliament resumes, one of the first sets of laws to ratify is the Budapest Convention. “As you’re all aware, Ghana is the third nation on the African Continent to sign these two conventions and the government is committed to implement them to the latter” President Akufo-Addo said.
The National Cyber Security Advisor, Albert Antwi-Boasiako disclosed that due to the progress made by the country in fighting cybercrime, member nations from the ECOWAS region have approached Ghana through the Ministry of Communications to support in establishing similar systems in their counties.
“Our colleagues from other West African countries have approached the Ministry of Communications and have requested Ghana’s support to establish similar systems. Indeed the World Bank and ECOWAS are adopting a similar model to establish the ECOWAS Cyber Security Technical Working Group to advance cyber security development in the sub region” he stated.
The advisor acknowledged the support of major Development Partners including the European Union and the World Bank on the progress made so far, admitting that there is a huge task ahead due to the growing demand for new technologies across the globe.
“We need to scale up our efforts to protect our Critical National Information Infrastructure, we need to address existing gaps in our Cybercrime and Cyber Security Legislation, we need to speed up capacity-building efforts for public officials, we need to intensify our public awareness creation efforts and most importantly, we need to operationalize our International Cooperation efforts in addressing the challenges that we face as a country” he concludes.
The Country Director for World Bank, Mr. Henry Kerali noted that the transition from traditional to digital economies remains particularly critical for developing economies as it enables faster growth, offers innovative products and services, creates jobs and boosts economic competitiveness, thereby reducing poverty and boosting prosperity. He said The World Bank Group has identified cyber security as a critical element to foster digital development and implement the Digital Economy Agenda in developing countries indicating, the Word Bank Group has established partnerships with other Development Partners to support the global advancement of cyber security capacity in developing countries.
“This week, we have a Cyber Security Clinic for the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), with the support of the Governments of Japan, the UK and Israel. The objective is to raise awareness and build capacity in cyber security based on knowledge and expertise from cyber security experts”. He reiterated.
In a related development, President Akufo – Addo also commissioned the Common Platform at the National Communications Authority (NCA) tower in Accra, Monday October 22, 2018, the President called on the Commissioner-General of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) to take full advantage of the Common Platform and roll out innovative ways to broaden the country’s tax net. This he noted marks a major milestone in his administration in the quest to digitize Ghana and guarantee revenue in the sector.
The Minister for Communications Mrs. Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, in an address urged all telecommunication networks to cooperate with NCA by giving the right information in the monitoring process. She expressed confidence in the GRA and NCA working together to ensure that the State gets the necessary revenue from the operators as well as delivering on their mandate of providing quality services for the consumers.