Business News of Tuesday, 4 July 2017
The alarming rate at which the systems of the Ghana Community Network Services Limited (GCNet) breaks down and stalls productivity at the ports is worrying and deserves attention, the Ghana Ports and Habour Authority (GPHA) has revealed.
“The problem that is currently facing us is the frequent breakdown in the network. So sometimes, it holds down our activities for two to four hours and that is the problem that we are facing currently with the GCNet system”, Emmanuel Ashaley Neequaye, Terminal Supervisor at GPHA told Citi News.
Mr. Ashaley Neequaye continued: “The breakdown is technical and with this inter connectivity thing, when the weather gets bad, the network goes off. In fact, since its [GCNet] inception, the problem has been there. Sometimes when the weather gets clear, they work normal for about two months.
“When it is raining, they go off, when it is stormy the go off. So that is it. Sometimes, you would not even know what happened but they would tell you that GCNet is off. That has been the problem.”
In response, GCNet explained that though the company suffers technical hitches, is has the capacity to address such challenges.
“We offer a technical service and there can be technical hitches at certain times but it is how we react to those technical hitches that happen. Within all those systems, we have dual links; tidal and radio links where in the event that one is not functioning, we switch to the other,” Chief Technical Officer of GCNet, Matthew Soputamit stated to same Citi News.
Over the years, there have been frequent complaints from stakeholders on the issue of GCNet system breakdown.
The distressing and frequent system breakdown situation complained of by GPHA is not different from what is happening with the Total Revenue Integrated Processing System (TRIPS), computer software deployed by GCNet for managing databases for controlling and administering revenue as well as tax payment processing.
There are still paper works at the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) in spite of the TRIPS System in place and stakeholders have reported of instances where there are no even computers to discharge their duties.
The Registered General Department (RGD) is also facing the same problems.
The same GCNet was contracted to deploy automated system at RGD to ensure 100 percent online business registration to reduce cost and time of trade transaction but a recent surprise visit to the facility by vice president Mahamudu Bawumia revealed it has not lived up to expectation.
The paper also has it that GCNet’s components used to track transit goods are not working properly, as the trackers are unable to track goods from Accra to their final destination.
During such system breakdowns, GCNet would send messages to its frustrated clients explaining and apologizing for the crisis: “Dear Valued Client, Processing time for declaration in GICCS is taking longer than normal. We do appreciate your patience as we take steps to normalize it. We apologize for the inconvenience caused”.