The Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) has received initial funding of US$1.1 million from the Hewlet and Vodafone UK Foundations to begin key framework strategies towards achieving agenda 2030 targets and obtain reliable data to monitor Ghana’s progress in the Sustainable Developmental Goals.

The funding, which was advanced through Care International, a global humanitarian agency, will enable the GSS develop and implement a single data framework platform that will be recognized as reliable and used for official purposes to inform policy by working with government and civil society organizations to advance the SDGs.

Currently, Ghana does not have a data quality assurance framework that guides the statistical agencies on how to align statistics production to the fundamental principles of official statistics, despite all statistical producing agencies having internal quality checks they produce.

The GSS is the only institution with the responsibility for ensuring official data that is produced meets acceptable quality standards.

To achieve this, discussions between the GSS and Statistical South Africa are far advanced aimed at developing a data framework for Ghana.

Having a single data framework in place also ensures that the data that is produced meet certain basic standards which gives confidence in the use of the data for planning and monitoring programs that can be easily accessed by everyone.

The funds are designed at training GSS staff on the National Statistical System on how to combine telecom data with survey and census data to produce regular statistical indicators that usually take more time to be produced.

The statistical indicators will focus on areas such as internal migration, access to social services and the spread of communicable diseases all aimed at informing policy to monitor Ghana’s progress of the SDGs.

Telecom data has been proven to be very useful. However, it has not been used widely to produce official statistics. Ghana is one of the few countries that will be using telecom data to produce official statistics.

According to Mr. Seidu, the philanthropist agencies did not only show interested in supporting Ghana because it is one of the drives to produce data to monitor the progress of the SDGs, but it was as a result of frantic efforts Ghana is making towards the achievements of the 2030 target.