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"E-Government - The Singapore Experience
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An African wise saying admonishes us that: ""Whenever the rhythm of the drum beats changes, you must fiddle with the dance action accordingly.""

 

It is no longer honored knowledge that guidance and Communication Technology has launched the entire globe into what is now known as the e-world-meaning electronic world. Today Governments the world higher than are somersaulting to reinvent and re-engineer governance thus as to be more effective, efficient and transparent in the provision of information, goods and facilities to their citizens electronically.

 

Fortunately Ghana school management system has already started dancing to the tune of the technological music because presidency has laid the introduction for e-government by establishing the government of Ghana website popularly referred to as Ghana Portal which is bodily managed by the counsel facilities Department of the Ministry of suggestion in Accra. dealing out has next expected the Ghana-India Kofi Anan IT centre of Excellence and above all, Ghana has formulated an instruction Communication Technology framework for accelerated development, brute spearheaded by the Ministry of Communications.

 

Nevertheless, like it comes to the practicability, accessibility and usability of e-government facilities by citizens, Ghana yet has some mountains to climb and some rivers and lagoons to wade through. It is adjacent to this backdrop that this writer deems it relevant to share the Singapore e-government experience with fellow Ghanaians. But, even in the past shedding some well-ventilated upon e-government strategies and implementations in Singapore, it may be critical to tell what e-government is in the first place.

 

On Saturday July 31 this year, at the Johannesburg airdrome in South Africa, this writer came across a work of Ghanaians upon their pretension to Zimbabwe to allow share in a photograph album fair in that country. later in a chart in imitation of one of them, where it was revealed that I was on my showing off from Singapore where I underwent a rushed training course in e-government, my interlocutor exclaimed:

 

'Eeeee-Government!' ""What is that animal, too?"" he approximately shouted unconsciously.

 

As a business of fact, my friend confessed that, he was hearing for the first era the term e-government. unconventional in the same way as we parted company and he went to Zimbabwe and I was airborne to Ghana, I started debating taking into account my inner self: ""If this man, well-educated, busy in the capital city of Accra, participating in an international event such as a folder fair, has not still heard of the term e-government until then, subsequently what happens to the majority of uneducated and less fortunate brothers and sisters dwelling in deprived rural communities of the country?

 

Because we are busy in a world of Knowledge direction (KM) and Experience Sharing, I cannot affirmation to be an proficient in this field, but the tiny I know roughly e-government must be shared past others for the benefit of all who care to know; for the advancement of mankind and to the glory of the Divine wisdom or the First Giver of knowledge itself.

 

The question is: What is E-government? The allied Nations defines e-Government as ""Permanent faithfulness by presidency to add up the connection surrounded by the private citizen and the public sector through enhanced, cost-effective and efficient delivery of services, information and knowledge."" It went further to notify that there are five categories of measuring a country's ""e-gov"" expansion in terms of Web Presence. This includes: Emerging - Enhanced - Interactive - Transactional and abundantly Integrated. every UN zealot states have been called upon and encouraged to embark on this e-government project and programme.

 

Accordingly the world body has a exaggeration of assessing the go forward of each country in this regard. Significantly in the UN savings account for this year on e-government globally, Singapore, a small Island City acknowledge of Land- place of 697.1sq km when a population of 4.185 million souls is sharing the 2nd turn in imitation of the strong associated States of America taking into account Canada comfortably sitting on top of all.

 

How did Singapore create it to the top of e-government league table of the world? What strategies and policies were put in place; in imitation of and how did that country reach such a technological talent greater than and above the super powers of this planet of economic inequalities?

 

Computerisation

 

Singapore set off on its e-government journey as far afield help as very nearly 25 years ago. In 1981, Singapore embarked upon a computerization programme of the organization machinery. It first time-honored a National Computer Board and National Computerisation Plan. The plot was to ensure a reasoned accrual of local IT industry; progress of IT manpower pool; Civil benefits Computerisation plot and the production of 850 IT Professionals.

 

National IT Plan

 

After the Computerisation programme, the Singapore paperwork embarked on what was referred to as the National IT Plan. The National IT plan initiated what was known as the Beginnings of Computing Communications Convergence. It furthermore constituted what was dubbed Electronic Data every second (EDI), which was basically aimed at bridging running and industry. This plan took area in 1986 that is five years or consequently after the Computerisation Programme.

 

IT 2000 Blueprint for intelligence Island

 

This Blueprint strategy that then started exceeding five years after the

National IT scheme in 1992 was to effect what was called Flagship Projects on the Singapore Island. It had the objectives to create an electronic network linking all libraries in that country; secure infrastructure for e-commerce; expert system for checking all building plans in the country and above every to insist Singapore ONE, that is, to make one network for everyone in Singapore. It was this strategy that shot Singapore going on to the point of view of the world's first nationwide broadband infrastructure nation in the e-world.

 

Infocomm 2001

 

The next-door step Singapore took, after attaining a nationwide broadband infrastructure, was to commencement what was dubbed Infocomm 2001. This project was launched in year 2000 and aimed at developing Singapore into a active and practicing global assistance communication capital, when a well-off and prosperous e-Economy, and a pervasive and ""Infocomm-savvy"" e-Society and full telecom liberalisation in that country.

 

Connected Singapore

 

In 2003, Singapore management launched the conclusive onslaughts on its e-government programme by establishing what was comprehensibly known as similar Singapore. This strategy was to unleash the potential for the sum realisation of all e-government possibilities through the Info comm project of the country.

 

Briefly, the preceding steps known in Singapore as the five (5) National Strategic ICT Plans find the money for us an overview of the method Singapore adopted to become the 2nd e-Nation in the e-World today at the rear Canada. The Singapore paperwork has a philosophy that: ""Whatever services that can be delivered electronically must be delivered electronically"" Period.

 

Another African wise saying reminds us that, ""If your tormentor who is government after you does not stop, you, too, must not stop running."" As long as Ghana remains a developing country, Ghanaians must not end prosecution to build and progress.

 

In the first share of this article the definition of e-Government according to the allied Nations was provided. Singapore dispensation used the UN definition of e-Government as a guide, but simplified it for easy concurrence by unexceptional person in the street.

 

According to school management system Singapore, e-Government is the use of technology to

enhance the permission to and delivery of government facilities to benefit citizens and businesses. It pointed out that the beneficiaries of e- organization count up the processing itself, businesses and the citizens of the country concerned.

 

How did the Singapore processing use technology to enlarge admission to and delivery of admin assistance and services to the people? E-Government feign scheme II (2003-2006) In order to attain its acknowledged goals the Singapore doling out formulated an put on an act plan known as e-Government accomplishment plan II for the year 2003 to 2006.The vision of the dealing out was to be a leading e- management to better minister to the nation in the digital economy.

 

The target of this scheme was to ensure ""a Networked Government

that delivers accessible, integrated, value-added e-services to our customers; and helps bring citizens closer together"". A slogan was developed thus: e-Government- Delighting Customers, Connecting Citizens.

 

What are some of the services that the Singapore dealing out provides for its customers who are the citizens of the country? Even before we touch on some of the facilities provided online, shall we locate out why Singapore presidency came to the attainment that the beneficiaries of e-Government augment Government, businesses and citizens?

 

It is important to note that within the scope of e-Government, there are several categories that fit into the expansive definition of e-Government. For example, e-Government constitutes: A Government- to-Citizens (G2C); B- Government-to-Business (G2B); C- Government-to-Employees (G2E); and eventually D-Government to- dispensation (G2G).

 

G2C: Government-to-Citizens, according to experts, includes all the interactions amongst a paperwork and its citizens that can take place electronically. The intention of G2C is to pay for citizens faster, more responsive, more convenient and less complicated means to public services.

 

G2B: In the prosecution of Government-to-Business, it refers to e-commerce in which organization sells to businesses or provides them behind services, as competently as businesses selling products and services to government. once more the try of G2B is to enable businesses to interact, transact and communicate when processing online, taking into consideration greater swiftness and convenience.

 

G2E: Government-to-Employees includes happenings and facilities surrounded by government units and their employees. As the term implies, the aspire of G2E is to build and cultivate IT capabilities in the course of running employees to refer efficient and cost-effective services.

 

G2G: Interestingly, Government-to-Government seems to have dual significance. One, G2G is said to consist of goings-on in the company of direction and further Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of the thesame government.

 

The extra meaning of G2G is a thing in which Governments have to agreement like their new counterpart governments of swing countries. This second G2G in the information of experts is anchored on trust and interdependence, which allows for recommendation sharing accompanied by governments on regional, sub-regional and international issues.

 

For example, the direct of terrorism; the meting out of cross border diseases afterward SARS, which occurred in Asia some epoch ago or even HIV/AIDS. This G2G moreover has to pull off subsequently common economic challenges as well as ethnic wars and conflicts problems facing West African States for instance. For Singapore organization to accomplish the enviable e-Government status through enthusiastic online services delivery to its citizens, distinct strategies were another time adopted:

 

I) E-Government Infrastructure

 

The presidency put in place a National guidance Infrastructure as backbone for e-government services delivery. This strategy was christened Public sustain Infrastructure (PSI) in Singapore.

 

Physical Infrastructure

 

Government itself provided Internet access points in convenient places such as public libraries, shopping malls, direction offices, hospitals, subway stations and clubs and relevant public places for the citizens to use forgive of charge.

 

Technology Infrastructure

 

Here, the direction provided computers, servers, networks (broadband and wireless), mobile devices, smart cards as with ease as technology standards that are admission and scalable such as Java, XML, Web services.

 

Authentication Infrastructure

 

Under this the handing out provided E-Government ID and Password for every its citizens. It made it easier for unquestionably citizen to know how to log online and entrance management counsel and services.

 

II) E-Government Legislation &Policy

 

Having put in school management system area the essential infrastructure for the e-government facilities to the citizens, the adjacent strategy the Singapore giving out adopted was the achievement of relevant rules and regulations and policies that run the implementation of the programme.

 

Some of the major regulations were meant to safeguard privacy and information security; data protection, data privacy, computer misuse, authenticated salutation of electronic transactions, recognized rule of cryptography, security audits and well as standards and official recognition of security practices. Singapore's legislation and code of practice include Computer insults Act; Electronic Transaction Act, which was enacted in 1998, tried to clarify the rights and obligations of transaction parties, and furthermore provided authentic status on the use of electronic history and signature. The processing with provided data support Code.

 

III) E-Government Services

 

After putting in place ICT infrastructure and legislation and policy the processing after that developed a website called E-Citizen Portal. This website was to enable citizens to question questions and receive answers. Specific electronic services deliveries are provided on this site.

 

Some of the facilities on this website swell payment of taxes and fines; Issuance and renewal of driver's licenses; Helping citizens locate employment; National campaigns and preparedness start upon social facilities such health and education; creation of Internet and IT training courses; e-learning and smart card in schools. thus computer literacy started right from the primary educational in Singapore etc.

 

In the poor and rural communities, the management provided pardon computers and Internet entrance points and posted officers who know how to pretense the equipment to assist the illiterates to benefit from the online services.

 

In fact, in Singapore today some facilities in the same way as the issuing of Passports and Birth Certificates, you have to sit in the comfort of your house and fill the essential forms and e-mail them to the invade authorities. dispensation will return you for obtaining the facilities upon line. Interestingly if you go personally to those offices for the services, you will pay penalty for going there personally. And after paying the penalty you will be directed to go and use a computer in a corner

there in the office yet to apply for the documents you wanted.

 

In the raid of Businesses, E-Tender was introduced in that any company that wanted to bid for meting out contracts can unaccompanied complete that through the Internet. Corporate taxes could solitary be filed electronically. Annual Reports and periodic business reports are every presented online. As in the exploit of E-Citizens Portal, there is then one-stop Portal for all doling out procurement opportunities with

over 8,000 trading partners. It is on this Portal that every corporate bodies complete event next the dispensation in Singapore. This is known as integrated e- Services.

 

This is the level of E-Government school management system services in Singapore. Is it any shock that they are the 2nd e-nation after Canada in the e-world? Ghana, too, can complete the same no business how long it takes. What is important is for the Ghanaian IT experts to manage to pay for the truthful technological advice to the organization of Ghana."

 



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