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General News | Feb 4, 2005

Ghana is Up to Speed

Highway Africa News Agency

Despite competing against continental heavyweights South Africa and Egypt, Ghana managed to come out tops to the host of the WSIS Africa Regional Conference, currently being held here in Accra.

Head of the National Planning Committee for the conference, Mike Gizo sees this as another symbol of his country's vision to embrace the goals of ICTs for development.

Speaking briefly between telephone calls in the busy corridor of the Accra International Conference Centre, Gizo remarked that Ghana's action plan speaks of "ICT for accelerated development."

"We are moving at the cheetah's pace in the process," he proudly commented.

Some 800 delegates from around the world have been converging on the Accra International Conference Centre and the Kofi Annan India Centre of Excellent to discuss "Access - Africa's key to an inclusive Information Society".

Following a meeting between the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and the African Network Operators Group (AFNOG) here in 2002, Gizo said his 26 member committee felt confident about hosting this event. All preparations started during the middle of last year and some 150 volunteers have been mobilised to ensure the smooth running of events.

"This conference is really an eye opener for Ghanaians who are not IT literate," believes Taiwo Thomas, an exhibitor marketing the services of CIS at the conference.

"So far the visitors are impressed with the many home-grown products we have here. This conference will showcase how innovative Ghanaians can be," echoes Andrew Ameyaw, who is selling Persol's services.

Asked how much the conference will cost his country, shuffling through papers, Gizo said "I'm still spending, but I have a budget."

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