29.11.2023 Social News

Digitalisation is a planning tool, not development policy – Development Planner

Digitalisation is a planning tool, not development policy – Development Planner
29.11.2023 LISTEN

A Development Planner has argued that digitalisation is a development tool and not a development policy as is being portrayed in the Ghanaian political circles.

Mr Nyaaba-Aweeba Azongo, said digitalisation, like any form of technology, was a planning tool employed to enhance development policy planning, programmes, projects or activities, and therefore, could not on its own be a substitute for the complex exercise of development planning policy.

Expressing his views on the two major policies-digitalisation and 24-hour economy, which were currently being debated by the front-line political parties ahead of the 2024 general election, he said it was important for Ghanaians to draw a distinction between a development policy and a planning tool.

He said planning as an art, had its own peculiar goals often christened in professional planning circles as 'Romantic Goals'.

These goals are efficiency, effectiveness, convenience, comfortability, flexibility etc.

Against this background any tool that was invented and could be deployed to enhance efficiency, effectiveness, convenience, and comfortability among others, in any existing activity or integrated into a development policy planning deliverables were considered as planning tools and not development policies, he explained.

Mr Azongo argued that it would therefore be inaccurate to describe these tools as development policies.

On the issue of the 24-hour economy development policy, Mr Azongo said “So far it is the most ambitious and overarching development policy proposal since the inception of the Fourth Republic.

What remained, however, was the planning and political commitment for a departure from the existing leadership order, to raise the standard of political policy-public engagement.

He said the visible landmark of leadership crisis, symbolic mediocrity and proletarian pride in the crumbs of wealthy nations amid abundant resources, provided a justifiable basis for more of such ambitious cutting-edge policy proposals and commitment to a new Ghanaian leadership order.

“I must emphasise that apart from the cutting-edge 24-hour Economy Development policy proposal, the maze of promises and manifestoes throughout the Fourth Republic are best described as 'Little drops of water not capable of forming a development ocean,” he told the GNA.

He stated that irrespective of any argument on the existing leadership order from any political lens in the fourth republic there was one consensus, which was poverty.

Mr Azongo said poverty was widespread and pervasive in Ghana, especially among its youthful population.

This was rising at staggering levels without a corresponding commitment to create opportunities for all without discrimination, and to guarantee a sustainable future free from the overbearing burden of debt, unemployment, diseases and cyclical poverty, Mr Azongo said.

He said the policy would require a Multi-Sectoral Planning Framework to build consensus and enlist lessons from successful models across the world as well as factor in Ghana's peculiar context to adopt a 24-hour development policy Model unique to the country's economy.

He said there was a need for more ambitious policy proposals from all the political parties considering that the country's development was at the crossroads of a critical turning point.