For the second time this year, Korean company, UNIPASS and its Ghanaian counterparts, Ghana Link have encountered problems in the piloting of the supposed new system with which the company intends to operate the Ghana National Single Window (GNSW).
The first piloting exercise at Aflao was marked with challenges and the second one, held at Takoradi last Friday suffered even more challenges that raised doubts on claims that the company owns a superior and better system than the ones currently being used by the Ghana Community Network Services Limited (GCNet) and West Blue Consult Limited in operating the GNSW.
The trend of failures has made mockery of the claim that UNIPASS has a superior system and also exposed the deception in that claim.
For example, a good number of agents who attempted to get registered on the new account run by UNIPASS could not get it because it was simply not successful and no convincing reason was given them.
The same challenges that were predicted by officials, who took part in the several repeated training sessions held by UNIPASS, were the same challenges that became evident during the pilot exercise at Takoradi.
The fear and anxiety now is the obvious disruption that would affect trade facilitation and revenue generation activities at the ports with the UNIPASS agenda being pushed at all cost.
Not only has this made Ghana a laughing stock within the sub-region but the country is also delaying the attempt of the sub-region to integrate its ports systems.
It is not certain the reason some persons near the corridors of power are bent on forcing the rushed implementation of UNIPASS despite the glaring unpreparedness and the fact that the company’s systems are yet to be tried and tested or even demonstrated to all relevant stakeholders in the ports-revenue-generation chain.
GCNET Won’t Hand Over System
UNI-PASS and Ghana Link is under pressure to prove that it has to take over the Ghana National Single Window at all cost because it has a supposed superior system that has not been tested and tried anywhere, not even demonstrated to the very officials that signed the contract with the company on behalf of government.
To add salt to injury GCNet has refused to comply with instructions from above that it should hand over its systems to UNIPASS to use to work.
Reports suggest that management of GCNet does not see the sense in why it should stop operations and hand over its systems to UNIPASS.
The company is reported to have said it would rather shut down than be forced to hand over its systems to UNIPASS.
West Blue on the other hand, has gone to court over what the company calls a plagiarism of a portion of its system.
Meanwhile, civil society and stakeholder groups continue to remind government on the dangers of the UNIPASS agenda and its negative consequences on revenue generation at the ports and trade facilitation in general.