2003 - The Government of Ghana published the ICT for Accelerated Development (ICT4AD) policy, where it envisaged modernizing Ghana’s educational system using ICTs to improve and widen access to education, training and research resources and facilities, as well as the improve the quality of education and training to transform Ghana into a knowledge-based society and economy. Policy runs for a number of 4-year rolling plans that are developed and implemented within the fifteen to twenty years. It is fully takes into account the aspirations and the provisions of key socio-economic development framework documents including: the Vision 2020 –The First Steps; the Ghana Poverty Reduction Strategy (GPRS) and the Co-ordinated Programme for Economic and Social Development of Ghana.
2006 - In partnership with Intel, Ghana government has provided computers for thousands of Ghana households and small business owners in span of three years. A range of inexpensive, brand new computers, supplied with access to the internet has helped to improve the level of computer literacy amongst workforce and students.
2008 - The Ghanaian Ministry of Education published ICT in Education Policy, which represents a critical step in streamlining efforts towards integrating ICTs into the educational sector. The policy’s mission is to stress the importance, responsibility and effectiveness of utilizing ICTs in the education sector, to address current sector challenges and prepare students, teachers and communities to meet the national and global demands of the 21st Century. Intel Corporation launched skoool.com for Ghana, a groundbreaking educational tool that offers students and teachers online education tools. Ghana Investment Fund for Electronic Communication (GIFEC) has launched its school connectivity project, which provides educational institutions in the poor areas of the country with computers, servers, and internet access.
2009 - Microsoft and the Ghanaian government signed a Memorandum of Understanding, extending a previous MoU which was signed in 2004, to enable Microsoft to provide training in ICT to trainee teachers in the country. Under the original 2004 agreement, three Information Technology academies were established, leading to the training of some 300 teachers. In the same year, the Partners in Learning Africa Network (PiLN) was established by Microsoft. The network allows teachers to access lesson plans and resources, join or start discussions with other members and share best practice. Ghana has signed an agreement with One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) to purchase 10,000 laptops after the success of the implementation of the 100 laptops in schools. The Baah-Wiredu Laptop per Child Foundation has been coordinating the deployment and funding of these laptops.
2010 - Ericsson, Earth Institute at Columbia University, and Millennium Promise have launched the ‘Connect to Learn’ initiative to address some of the challenges relating to secondary education access and quality, particularly among the girls, by providing scholarships and bringing ICT to schools in remote, resource-poor parts around the world, including Ghana, over mobile broadband. Microsoft and two other organizations partnered to host an Internet Safety, Security and Privacy (ISSP) convention in Accra.The aim of the conference was to look at alternative ways of fighting cybercrime in the country. Worldreader has launched its E-Reader Program where it provides e-readers and e-books to schools, libraries, and communities in Ghana that come with training and technical support.
2011 - The Ministry of Education published a draft copy of the Ghana ICT in Education Strategic Plan 2011 - 2015, where in nine objectives the ministry hopes to enable every Ghanaian to be able to confidently use ICT tools and develop the skills and knowledge needed to be able to participate in the global economy by 2015. The purpose of the ICT in Education Strategic Implementation Plan is to ensure that ICT are efficiently integrated to the Ghanaian education system to enable fulfilment of goals and guiding principles as stated in the Education Strategic Plan (ESP) 2010-2020, the Ghana ICT4AD. Through their Badiliko project, the British Council and Microsoft are working together to introduce ICT to children across Africa. The project aims give teachers, students and the wider community access to ICT, as well as professional development training for teachers. Currently, the project has trained over 20 000 educators and set up 80 digital hubs in six countries, including Ghana.
2013 - GESCI, an international nonprofit technical assistance organisation has completed its Ghana Senior Schools Connectivity Project. The purpose of the project was to increasing access to information and communication technology education for students in Ghana by providing and supporting internet connectivity. Open Learning Exchange (OLE) Ghana launched the Ghana Reads project to accelerate literacy among all of the children of Ghana. The project has installed and supported School Bells (School Basic e-Learning Libraries) in twenty rural elementary schools in the Ga West Municipality of the Greater Accra Region.
2014 - Samsung in partnership with the government of Ghana and the Korean Education and Research Information Service (KERIS) set up the first Solar Powered Internet School (SPIS) in a junior high school in local Dago community. Through this initiative teachers and students in rural areas have gained a better access to the internet. The Government of Ghana released the second Ghanda Growth and Development Agenda (2014 - 2017), where it aims aim at promote rapid development and deployment of the national ICT infrastructure; strengthen the institutional and regulatory framework for managing the ICT sub-sector; and increase the use of ICT in all sectors of the economy.
2015 - The Government of Ghana, under the Ministry of Communications and the National Communications Authority, celebrated Girls in ICT Day to encourage girls to think about careers in the ICT sector. A number of training sessions were held in developing ICT skills, software use and the use of types of hardware and other ICT tools. Microsoft Ghana in partnership with International Institute for Communication and Development (IICD) launched TizaaWorks, an online hub for employability and entrepreneurship. The platform aims to equip young graduates with the right skills to bridge the skills gap and secure job opportunities, as well as provide career guidance. Google has launched Project Link in Ghana by trenching pipe for a fiber optic network to serve the cities Accra and Kumasi. The goal of the project is to provide internet access in the less developed areas.
2015- J Initiative Marks Safer Internet Day in Ghana. The J Initiative, launched in 2015, started ‘Safer Internet Day’ to help promote safe use of the internet by children. This day helps teach children the difference between good and bad content, what to not share on the internet, and how to use their technology and web browsers responsibly.
2016- National Cyberweek - Organized by Ghana Computer Emergency Response Team, NITA, Ghana Chambers of Telecommunications, J initiative, ISACA, Ghana Internet Exchange Association, CyberSecurity and Investigation Bureau and National Communications Authority in Ghana, this day provides workshops and roundtable discussions on cybersecurity, incident response training, and more. This event promotes progression of the internet and how to protect users as participants hear about research and new initiatives from professionals in the field.
Global e-Schools and Communities Initiative (GeSCI)
Part of the UN ICT task-force, focused on ICT education across Africa and the developing world. Provides technical and research assistance to e-learning programs.
INTERPOL is the world’s largest international police organization, with 190 member countries. Its mission is to enable police forces to collaborate globally to fight crime in the Internet age. Three areas of focus are crimes against children (with a focus on internet crimes and travelling sex offenders), cybercrime and human trafficking.
ITU Development Sector, Africa
ITU-D fosters international cooperation and solidarity in the delivery of technical assistance and in the creation, development and improvement of telecommunication and ICT equipment and networks in developing countries.
A NGO that is dedicated to raising awareness on issues that affect families especially women and children. JI offers digital literacy programs for families which highlights the benefit of technology while responding to the risks that it can present.
A Policy Brief Child Online Protection In Ghana (2016)Awo Aidam Amenyah
This policy brief offers a contextual analysis of the current Child Online Protection (COP) environment in Ghana and gives important recommendations on how to ensure that children can utilize the opportunities the Internet offers without the potential adverse effects.
Child Online Protection: The Challenge for Policy Makers (2015)Awo Aidam Amenyah
This document discusses the importance of understanding how the Internet and technology affect children's lives.
Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in Education in Sub-Saharan Africa (2015)Peter Wallet
This document presents the current status of the Information and communication technologies in Education in the Sub-Saharan region.
C4C ICT-for-Education Study, Case study Ghana (2015)Jigsaw Consult
This case study of the work of Savana Signatures in Ghana forms part of the larger study investigating the impact of the 2011-2015 Connect4Change programme in Ghana and Zambia. The overall study also includes a case study on the C4C programme in Zambia, a Lessons Learned document and a Roadmap for Impact document based on the insights gained.
Children’s Rights in the Digital Age (2014)A. Third, D. Bellerose, U. Dawkins, E. Keltie, K. Pihl
This study found unequal access to digital media among youth from 16 countries, among other key findings on children's digital usage.
Reducing violence against children, with special focus on sexual exploitation of children and child sex tourism. (2014)The Netherlands, Defence for Children and ECPAT
This is a program by the Netherlands, Defence for Children and ECPAT, which objective is to reduce violence against children, with special attention to child sexual exploitation and child sex tourism.
Combating Child Sex Tourism: Question and Answers (2008)ECPAT
This is a general information document on Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children. It also gives an overview of the global situation.
This section contains details of the country’s laws as they relate to sexual offenses, children and the use of the Internet in the commission of criminal activity. Where possible, sentence details have been given, including whether an increased custodial penalty is imposed where the victim is a child.
The Government of Ghana drafted a Computer and Computer Related Crimes Act in 2005, but has not been implemented. The Act seeks to prohibit the unauthorized access, use of or interference to any program or data held on a computer and to the computer itself. Offenses include, but are not limited to, using a computer to publish child pornography; accessing data with intent to commit an offense or steal someone’s identity; causing damage by intentionally modifying a program or data held on a computer; using a computer service or function without authority, resulting in damage; interfering with, impeding or obstructing the use of a computer; disclosing the access code to a computer without authority; causing a computer to cease to function; producing, selling, procuring for use, importing, exporting, distributing or otherwise making available a device designed or adapted for the purpose of committing an offense against certain sections of this Act.
According to the Section 28(5) of Ghana’s Constitution, a child is a person under the age of eighteen.The age of consent for sexual intercourse is sixteen, as defined by Section 101 of the Criminal Code.
- Section 89, Criminal Code. Kidnapping. Whoever kidnaps any person shall be guilty of second degree felony.
- Section 90, Criminal Code. Definition of Kidnapping. A person is guilty of kidnapping— (a) who unlawfully imprisons any person, and takes him out of the jurisdiction of the Court, without his consent; (b) who unlawfully imprisons any person within the jurisdiction of the Court, in such a manner as to prevent him from applying to a Court for his release or from discovering to any other person the place where he is imprisoned, or in such a manner as to prevent any person entitled to have access to him from discovering the place where he is imprisoned.
- Section 91, Criminal Code. Abduction of Child Under Eighteen. Whoever is guilty of an abduction of any child under eighteen years of age shall be guilty of misdemeanour.
- Section 92, Criminal Code. Definition of Abduction. (1) (a) A person is guilty of abduction of a child who with intent to deprive any person entitled to the possession or control of the child or with intent to cause the child to be carnally known or unnaturally carnally known by any person— (i) unlawfully takes the child from the lawful possession, care or charge of any person; or (ii) detains the child and prevents the child from returning to the lawful possessions care or charge of any person. (b) A person is guilty of abduction of a female who, with intent to cause her to be married to any person— (i) unlawfully takes her from the lawful possession, care or charge of any person; or (ii) detains the female and prevents her from returning to the lawful possession, care or charge of any person”. (2) The possession, control, care, or charge of a child by a parent, guardian, or other person shall be held to continue, notwithstanding that the child is absent from his actual possession, control, care, or charge, if the absence is for a special purpose only, and is not intended by the parent, guardian, or other person to exclude or determine such possession, control, care, or charge for the time being; but a person is not guilty of abduction by taking or detaining a child unless he knew, or had grounds for believing that the child was in the possession, control, care, or charge of some other person.
- Section 93, Criminal Code. Child-Stealing. Whoever steals any person under fourteen years of age, whether with or without his consent, shall be guilty of a second degree felony.
- Section 94, Criminal Code. Definition of Child-Stealing. (1) A person is guilty of stealing another person who unlawfully takes or detains him, with intent to deprive him of the possession or control of him any person entitled thereto, or with intent to steal anything upon or about his body, or with intent to cause any harm to him (2) For the purposes of this section, it is not necessary to prove that the person stolen had been taken from the possession, care, or charge of any person, if it is shown that some person, other than the accused person, was entitled to the control or possession of the person stolen.
- Section 97, Criminal Code. Rape. States that anyone who commits rape is guilty of a first degree felony and is liable to imprisonment for a term of between five and 25 years.
- Section 98, Criminal Code. Definition of Rape. Defines rape as being sexual intercourse with a female aged sixteen or above without her consent.
- Section 101, Criminal Code. Defilement of Child Under 16 Years of Age. Defines defilement as the act of sexual intercourse, anal or vaginal, with any child under the age of sixteen. Anyone who commits defilement, whether with or without the child’s consent, commits an offense and will be liable to imprisonment for a term of between seven and 25 years.
- Section 103, Criminal Code. Indecent assault. Imposes a penalty of imprisonment for a minimum of six months for anyone who commits the misdemeanor of indecently assaulting another person. The section defines indecent assault as forcibly making any sexual bodily contact with the victim, or sexually violating the body of the victim in any manner not amounting to any form of sexual intercourse, without the victim’s consent.
- Section 105, Criminal Code. Incest. (1) A male of sixteen years or over who has carnal knowledge of a female whom he knows to be his granddaughter, daughter, sister, mother or grandmother commits an offence and shall be liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term of not less than three years and not more than twenty-five years. (2) A female of sixteen years or over who has carnal knowledge of a male whom she knows to be her grandson, son, brother, father or grandfather commits an offence and shall be liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of not less than three years and not more than twenty-five years. (3) A male of the age of sixteen years or over who permits a female whom he knows to be his grandmother, mother, sister or daughter to have carnal knowledge of him with his consent commits an offence and shall be liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of not less than three years and not more than twenty-five years. (4) A female of the age of sixteen years or over who permits a male whom she knows to be her grandfather, father, brother or son to have carnal knowledge of her with her consent shall be liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of not less than three years and not more than twenty-five years. (5) In this section “sister” includes half-sister, and “brother” includes half-brother, and for the purposes of this section any expression importing a relationship between the two people shall be taken to apply notwithstanding that the relationship is not traced through lawful wedlock.
- Section 106, Criminal Code. Householder Permitting Defilement of Child on his Premises. (1) The owner or occupier of any premises or a person acting or assisting in the management of premises who induces or knowingly permits any child of less than sixteen years of age to resort to or be in or on his premises to be carnally known or unnaturally carnally known by any person commits an offence and shall be liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of not less than seven years and not more than twenty-five years. (2) For the purpose of subsection (1) of this section it shall be an offence under this section whether carnal knowledge or unnatural carnal knowledge is intended to be with any particular person or generally. (3) It shall be a defence to any charge under this section that the child was of or above sixteen years of age.
- Section 107, Criminal Code. Procuration. Prohibits, among others, the procurement of any person for the purpose of prostitution in Ghana or elsewhere, including persons under twenty-one years of age.
- Section 108, Criminal Code. Causing or Encouraging the Seduction or Prostitution of a Child Under Sixteen. Penalises the promotion of prostitution in relation to a child under sixteen.It states that whoever is having the custody, charge or care of a child under the age of sixteen years causes or encourages the seduction, carnal knowledge or unnatural carnal knowledge, prostitution or commission of indecent assault upon the child shall be guilty of a misdemeanour.
- Section 112, Criminal Code. Negligent and Intentional Libel. (1) Whoever is guilty of negligent libel shall be liable to a fine not exceeding ¢400,000. (2) Whoever is guilty of intentional libel shall be guilty of misdemeanour.
- Section 113, Criminal Code. Cases in which a Person is Guilty of Libel. A person is guilty of libel, who, by print, writing, painting, effigy, or by any means otherwise than solely by gestures, spoken words, or other grounds, unlawfully publishes any defamatory matter concerning another person, either negligently or with intent to defame that other person.
- Section 114, Criminal Code. Definition of Defamatory Matter. (1) Matter is defamatory which imputes to a person any crime, or misconduct in any public office or which is likely to injure him in his occupation, calling or office, or to expose him to general hatred, contempt, or ridicule. (2) In this section “crime” means a felony or misdemeanour and also any act, where soever committed, which if committed by a person within the jurisdiction of the Court, would be a felony or misdemeanour.
- Section 115, Criminal Code. Definition of Publication. (1) A person publishes a libel if he causes the print, writing, painting, effigy, or other means by which the defamatory matter is conveyed, to be so dealt with, either by exhibition, reading, recitation, description, delivery, or otherwise, as that the defamatory meaning thereof becomes known or is likely to become known, to either the person defamed of any other person. (2) It is not necessary for libel that a defamatory meaning should be directly or completely expressed; and it suffices if such meaning and its application to the person alleged to be defamed, can be collected either from the alleged libel itself or from any extrinsic circumstances, or partly by the one and partly by the other means.
- Section 116, Criminal Code. Definition of Unlawful Publication. Any publication of defamatory matter concerning a person is unlawful, within the meaning of this Chapter, unless it is privileged on one of the grounds hereafter mentioned in this Chapter.
- Section 279, Criminal Code. Definitions. Defines prostitution as the offering by a person of his body commonly for acts of lewdness for payment,with no specific reference to child prostitution.
- Section 281(1), Criminal Code. Further Offences Relating to Obscenity. This section sets out provisions prohibiting the production, distribution, exhibition or possession of obscene materials or performances in general. Those who commit any of the above acts are, under section 281 of the Criminal Code, guilty of a misdemeanour.
- Section 136(1) Ghana’s Electronic Transactions Act, 2008 (Act 772). A person who intentionally “(a) publishes child pornography through a computer; (b) produces or procures child pornography for the purpose of its publication through a computer system; or (c) possesses child pornography in a computer system or on a computer or electronic record storage medium commits an offence.
- Section 136(2), Ghana’s Electronic Transactions Act, 2008 (Act 772). Provides a definition of child pornography, which includes materials that “visually depicts (a) a child engaged in sexually explicit conduct; (b) a person who appears to be a child engaged in sexually explicit conduct; (c) images representing a child engaged in sexually explicit conduct; and (d) unauthorised images of nude children.”
- Section 136 (2)(a), Ghana’s Electronic Transactions Act, 2008 (Act 772). Publish is expansively defined to mean: (a) distribute, transmit, disseminate, circulate, deliver, exhibit, lend for gain, exchange, barter, sell or offer for sale or make child pornography available in any way; (b) have in possession or custody, or under control, for the purpose of doing an act referred to in paragraph (a); and (c) print, photograph, copy or make in any other manner whether of the same or of a different kind or nature to carry out an act referred to in paragraph (a). The punishment for offences of this kind includes a fine of up to 5000 penalty units or a term of imprisonment of not more than 10 years or both.
Actions of the Convention on the Rights of the Child: Ghana has acceded, with no declarations or reservations to articles 16, 17(e) and 34 (c), to the Convention on the Rights of the Child and to articles 2 and 3, to the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography.
2008 - The Government of Ghana formed a partnership with Microsoft and a local nonprofit organization, Focus on Ghana, to engage youth in facing the challenges of cybercrime through the MISFOG project, although no further information could be found about the initiative. The Parliament of the Republic of Ghana passed the Electronic Transactions Act (2008), which regulates electronic communications and related transactions, including it prohibits the possession of child pornography.
2010 - The Ghana Media Advocacy Programme, which is a child-rights non-governmental organisation, collaborated with Ghanaian media to ensure that the government ratified the International Cyber Crime protocol to accelerate the call for legislation on cybercrime in Ghana.
2013 - The Ghanaian government hosted a three-day West Africa Cybersecurity Workshop, facilitated by the US Department of State. The workshop was attended by around 80 participants from eleven countries, who discussed about the successes and challenges of fighting cybercrime. At the WSIS Forum, the Ghanaian Ministry of Communications entered into an agreement with the ITU that establishes the Ghanaian Computer Incident Response Team (CIRT). With support from the Ghana Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-GH), CIRT provides a national response to cybercrime and cyber-attacks affecting Ghana.
2014 - Ministry of Communications held the First Digital Family Forum to discuss child online security. The forum identified that the protection of children online is a collective responsibility that should be dealt with by all stakeholders, including the industry, government and parents. Ghana participated in the Regional Conference on Africa Child Online Protection (ACOP), which was organized under the theme of “Empowering the Future Digital Citizens.” The event focused on the five pillars of the Child Online Protection (COP) Initiative: legal measures, technical and procedural measures, organizational structure, capacity building and international cooperation. The Government signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Commonwealth Cybercrime Initiative (CCI) to develop its cybersecurity capabilities on child protection and cyber security schemes.
2015 - To fulfill the goals and guiding principles of the ICT4AD to combat cybercrime through the use of ICT, the Ghanaian Ministry of Communication published National Cyber Security Policy and Strategy. The strategy’s vision is to secure and stable connect Ghana with Internet users working and creating wealth in a safe cyber space. Ministry of Communication promises to develop a framework for the protection of children using the Internet and ensures that international child online protection agencies and stakeholders work together to address children’s online risk. The Ministry of Interior in coordination with UNICEF hosted a two-day forum on the theme: “Stakeholders brainstorming session on online child sexual exploitation - an emerging security threat in Ghana.”
2016 - Since its establishment in 2009, World Vision’s Keeping Children Safe Online project has has reached more than 5,800 children, 4,800 parent and 3,000 teachers through training and peer-to-peer projects that help keep children and youth safe online. The project is currently being incorporated into World Vision’s Child Protection and Participation work in Latin America and Africa, including Ghana.