Last week, the current Government administration unveiled its new e-Government Portal called “Ghana.Gov“. The portal is a central repository where users can find information about government services and interact.
Tech Nova decided to review the portal and see how it works and if it lives up to the hype as far as offering online government services for citizens for easy use and online payment.
The Sign Up Process
The sign up is pretty straight forward. Users just have to provide their full names, phone number and password and then sign up.
The phone number is required because you will be sent a code to your phone which you’ll need to complete the registration.
We had some initial hiccups with the site not recognising the code that was sent but thankfully, we were able to register after a few tries.
About The Ghana.Gov Portal
The Ghana.Gov portal is described as a “digital service and revenue collection platform created to provide a single point of access to Government of Ghana services for the public sector“.
The objectives of the portal are to:
- Process all payments and transfers (both electronic and cash) against predefined service flows of each MDA and MMDA.
- Manage post-payment workflow, customer notification, feedback and service ratings.
However, after review of the portal, it looks like it’s currently 50-50 when it comes to offering what it’s supposed to do.
Death By A Thousand Redirects
One thing we noticed, is that most of the processes and payment functionality is not done on the portal itself but on individual government websites. Basically, when you visit a section like the “Driver License And Vehicle“, you will be redirected to the DVLA website to start their process.
In a way, you would be thinking that the process would occur on the portal itself but that’s not the case. (We couldn’t review DVLA’s website because the site was down when we published this article)
Half Manual, Half Automated
With just a few sampling of government website services, it’s apparent that most of them don’t have an online process when it comes registering online and paying for services.
Services like DVLA and Births and Deaths Registry don’t have any online processes and sites like Lands Commission were totally offline.
The shining light here is the Passport Office process which so far offers the best experience it comes to online registration and payment. The Passport Office section offers a full application process which is indicated by the “Apply” button at the bottom.
Bumpy Start, Hopeful Future
The Ghana.Gov site is actually well done. The web design is clean and nicely designed for desktops and also works very well on mobile devices.
However, there’s still a lot of work that needs to be done on the portal. Even though other government agencies have their own websites and need a redirect to start a payment or application process, the portal needs to take the basic information of the portal user and transfer that data when redirected (The Passport Office redirect has this function).
Also, most government websites are “offline“. They function more as an “information” source than a web service where users can sign up and pay for services online.
Sites like Births And Deaths are still manual and the Registrar General services still have issues with its online services which many users have abandoned in favor of the manual process.
The Ghana.Gov portal can easily emulate the UK government’s portal site where most of their government services are online.
The Ghana.gov portal is not there yet and it still needs work but it’s still a good foundation to build on. Hopefully, future governments will continue to build on top of it to onboard future government services on to it to offer a faster and convenient process for its citizens.