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Sunday, November 28, 2021

NSS Boss Swings Into Action

Osei Assibey-Antwi

The newly-appointed acting Executive Director of National Service Scheme (NSS), Osei Assibey-Antwi, has hit the ground running with series of tours to track the ongoing registration of personnel posted for the 2021/2022 service year.

The NSS boss’ visits took him to the Ashanti, Bono, Ahafo, Bono East and Northern regions, where he was accompanied by his deputy in charge of Operations, Kwaku Ohene Djan and Director of Corporate Affairs, Armstrong Esaah.

The Deputy Executive Director in charge of General Services, Gifty Oware-Mensah also led another team from the headquarters to visit centres in the Greater Accra, Central and Western regions.

Furthermore, the NSS Director of Audit, Albert Oteng Owusu also led another team to visit centres in the Upper West Region, while the Director of Accounts, Eric Nyarko, led another group toured Eastern, Volta and Upper East Regions.

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The acting Director used the opportunity to caution national service persons to avoid falling victim to activities of scammers in the name of looking for “special postings.”

Speaking during a working visit to some registration centres across the country, Mr. Assibey-Antwi warned the service persons to be careful of these individuals parading as agents of the scheme for such “dubious activities,” adding “the NSS management has launched a full-scale investigation into the activities and the security agencies are on the lookout for persons behind this syndication.”

The NSS boss said the visit afforded the directors the opportunity to properly monitor the registration exercise and engage stakeholders, while gathering intelligence from the post-deployment registration exercise to enhance the operations of the scheme.

Mr. Assibey-Antwi indicated that management was leveraging technology in line with the President’s digitisation agenda to protect the public purse by deploying multi-layered identification and verification systems.

“Our intent is to make it costly for criminals to infiltrate the NSS operations,” he said, while recollecting rollout of the Artificial Intelligence (AI) security feature called ‘metric app’ at all designated registration centres for the 2021/2022 service registrations.

He explained that this facial recognition software is meant to prevent the possibility of “ghost names,” to speed up the registration process, detect impersonation and prevent identity theft by fraudsters.

Since 2017, the NSS has introduced many digital innovations including a paperless registration system, which features barcode scanning, fingerprint verification, an online appointment booking and online certificate request and delivery to enhance operational efficiency and serve stakeholders better.

According to the NSS boss, the introduction of “these robust, self-managed and automated process” had decreased long queues at registration centres, the frequency of human interactions and the margin of human errors committed during registration.

Every year, National Service Scheme (NSS) deploys Ghanaian youths 18 years and above who have successfully completed accredited tertiary institutions to public and private organisations to render mandatory service for a period of one year.

By Ernest Kofi Adu

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