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OPINION: Ghana GPS App Does Not Solve Ghana’s Addressing Problems

Someone told me that you can’t use the Ghana GPS app when your cellular data was off. I thought that was odd and called BS.

So I turned off my cellular data and tried the application again.Guess what? It didn’t work. They were right.

And so begins the debate about the current solution being deployed to solve the addressing system in Ghana.

The President Nana Akufo Addo officially unveiled the digital addressing system that Ghana has been seemingly waiting for. It felt like a long time coming. Finally, the problems of trying to locate places in Ghana without the need for identification of landmarks and other dubious directions would be a thing of the past.

But is the current solution for Ghana’s addressing problem really in the form of a “mobile application” called GhanaPostGPS?

I decided to take the app through its paces and see exactly how it would be solving Ghana’s Addressing problems.

When you first start the application, it asks you to verify with your number. Once, you’re past the verification screen, the app starts to locate your current position via GPS. The concept of the app is that it divides Ghana into grids of 5m x 5m squares and assigns each grid a unique address.

The process appears to work fine. On the main page, I’m given the option of searching for a particular location via the search bar. I searched for the “Accra Mall” and it showed me the location, along with the “digital address”. If you were at home, the app would pick your current location and would assign it a digital address.

So does this concept really solve the problem of addressing or does it just assign an addressing format to a location?

But how does the back end verification work? What database is the app querying to verify that a user’s ID is valid? I’m not really certain.

So does this concept really solve the problem of addressing or does it just assign an addressing format to a location?

I asked a couple of questions in an earlier article about the adoption of this “system”. Are institutions like banks and other entities going to use this application to get the addresses of citizens? Or am I going to walk into a bank and have to draw my directions on paper when giving my home address?

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