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Regional News | May 17, 2004

ICT Centre established at Jirapa

GNA

Jirapa (U/W), May 17, GNA - The government will establish an information communication technology centre (ICT) in every district by the end of August this year, in furtherance of its objective to make ICT the driving force of the economy.

Mr Ambrose Dery, Deputy Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, who announced this said contracts for the commencement of work on the centres would soon be awarded.

He was inaugurating a newly established five-billion cedis (500,000 Euros) ICT Centre located at the premises of the Saint Joseph's orphanage at Jirapa on Saturday.

Known as the Saint Joseph Knowledge Centre, it was initiated by Mr Paul Naarbo De Sio, one of the pioneers of the orphanage, who is now based in Italy, with support from friends in that country.

Dignitaries, made up of His Eminence Cardinal Peter Appiah Turkson, Dr Kofi Dsane-Selby, Ghana's Ambassador to Italy, Archbishop Emeritus Peter Dery, former Archbishop of Tamale, Most Reverend Paul Bemile, Catholic Bishop of Wa Diocese, Mr Edward Salia, MP for Jirapa and a 19-member strong delegation from Italy, attended the ceremony.

The centre has 26 computers and a satellite with Internet and video conference equipment.

Mr Dery said, in addition to the provision of the ICT centre, the government has charged Ghana Telecom to connect all senior secondary schools to telephone facilities as the initial step towards the deployment of ICT to all educational institutions.

The Deputy Attorney-General expressed the hope that the facility would be used as the start of the process of making ICT a reality in the Upper West Region.

He urged the people to take advantage of the centre to improve upon their socio-economic conditions.

With the facility, he said, they could benefit from the President's Special Initiative on distance learning by upgrading their knowledge. On the political front, Mr Dery, appealed to religious leaders to impress on politicians to use decent methods to seek the mandate of the people.

"Politicians must seek votes purely on issues and avoid insults, casting of aspersions and mudslinging".

He said the NPP government had declared its commitment to a free and fair elections and it, therefore, behoved all to work towards the realisation of that commitment.

Mr Dery commended the Italy-based philanthropist for his ingenuity and concern for the poor and expressed the hope that citizens abroad would emulate him.

Mr De Sio said revenue that would accrued from the commercial activities of the centre, would be used to support the orphanage. 16 May 04

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