A Former Director General of the National Information Technology Agency (NITA), Dr George Atta-Boateng, says it is impossible for the Electoral Commission (EC) to build a good data center by December, 2020.
According to Dr Atta Boateng, a good solid data center takes not less than two years to build and considering the period left before the elections it is impossible.
“The building of Data Center will take not less than two years so how is the Electoral Commission going to build, test and migrate the data before December 7 elections” he queried.
The Electoral Commission (EC) says it has awarded the contract for the construction of the new Production and Disaster Recovery Datacentre to Persol Systems Limited, which has begun the processes for construction.
The selection was made following a successful international competitive tender process and the subsequent short listing of bidders last year, in compliance with the Public Procurement Act regulations.
Dr George Atta-Boateng speaking on Power Fm’s Morning Show, Dwaboase said it is unfortynate the EC is getting advice from wrong IT people.
said it is not possible for the EC to build new data Center, test and migrate it by December 2020.
He therefore dismissed the Electoral Commissioner’s excuse that the Electoral Commission (EC) needs a new data centre alongside the new biometric system it is planning to acquire.
However, he revealed that the EC does not need a new data centre because what it already has can accommodate whatever plan the EC has for the 2020 elections.
“You don’t need a new Data Center (DC). Ghana has the largest and most secured Tier-3 data centre in West Africa with 600 racks. EC does not need a new DC. whoever ‘warned ‘ you, that EC’s DC will “crash” misled you. Even if it “crashes”, you still have an option. West Africa’s largest DC can be located 800 meters away from your office. If you care to know, it is the property of the Republic of Ghana,” the former NITA boss corrected.
Mid-May 2019, the EC boss, Jean Mensah announced that the election regulator was taking steps to secure its own Information Technology Systems and Biometric Data Centre to manage election results and data.
According to her, the Commission will no longer use STL, an information technology company that has been managing its data after acquiring its own equipment.
According to the EC, the new data centre will enable it to have full control of its systems and reduce the monies being paid to the company to maintain its data.
The Electoral Commission pays US$ 4 annually to STL to manage its data.
This is part of the controversy that has engulfed the EC over plans to recompile the voters register and install a new biometric system with facial recognition features. The current system uses mainly biometric fingerprint system.
Critics have questioned the EC’s rationale for trying to introduce a new system into the electoral management process less than one year to a major general election.