Interoperability: ‘Gov’t saved $1.1bn’

Government has said that they have saved the country from “unjustified extortion” by the erstwhile Mahama administration by re-awarding the Mobile Money Interoperability System contract to the Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems (GhIPSS) after cancelling an earlier one with SIBTON SWITCH...


Government has said that they have saved the country from “unjustified extortion” by the erstwhile Mahama administration by re-awarding the Mobile Money Interoperability System contract to the Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems (GhIPSS) after cancelling an earlier one with SIBTON SWITCH.

“The Akufo-Addo administration at this stage is pleased to have had the opportunity to engage all the stakeholders to correct what would have been an unjustified extortion from the good people of Ghana if the old deal had not being abrogated,” Deputy Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, said on Tuesday, 15 May 2018 at a press conference in Accra.

He said per the earlier agreement, the Bank of Ghana (BoG) agreed that SIBTON charges “the users of the platform, and who are the users of this platform predominantly? These are market women, farmers, drivers; people in the lower class are those who massively use these platforms that have been rolled out. Their arrangement was that the company SIBTON should charge these people $1.2bn; that is essentially what they did”.

He said the Akufo-Addo Government engaged relevant stakeholders to ensure that the system was implemented under a new cost-saving structure.

“Government, through the Bank of Ghana, through GhIPPS, is paying $4.5m and the Ghanaian at the end… who normally use this platform, does not need to pay a private company $1.2bn for their profit. This is a big savings to the people of Ghana”.

For him, “The arrangement [by the previous government] begs the question why GhIPPS was not even invited in the first place to do the job. Remember GhIPPS was set up to develop an interbank payment platform here in Ghana, so, if you are moving a step further to add interoperability platform, it only makes sense that GhIPPS be requested or charged to do the job and that is what we have done currently. It will make some people ask if somebody was creating a convenient scheme for persons to benefit”.

He dispelled suggestions that the initial deal was the best, adding that: “There is no EOCO report that claims that the SIBTON deal is the best deal”.

Source: Ghana/ClassFMonline.com/91.3FM



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