Dec 29, 2022 News
Kaieteur News – The Central Planning and Housing Authority (CH&PA) under the Ministry of Housing and Water on Wednesday signed a contract for the development and implementation of the Information Technology (IT) platform for the Single Window for the construction permitting process.
The $202 million contract which was signed by the CH&PA’s Chief Executive Officer, (CEO), Mr. Sherwyn Greaves , was awarded to Consultancy Firm, Global Services Inc. The contract was signed at the Ministry’s boardroom.
Delivering remarks at the simple signing ceremony was Minister within the Ministry of Housing and Water, Susan Rodrigues, who stated that by June next year the platform should be fully implemented. The Minister said that the introduction of the platform is truly a transformational project and a solution for the ease of doing business in Guyana. “Now for many years you have heard Government speaking about reducing the red tape, and making it easy for people to do business in Guyana and this is a demonstration of that commitment. So this IT platform followed by the Legislation that will be passed and that will be made into law will allow for a single window for planning and building permits,” she said.
The Minister noted that persons usually have to go through a whole host of Agencies to get their application processed but with the IT solution platform, it would “tremendously ease that process of doing business where you will present your completed application at a single window.”
According to Minister Rodrigues, they will have a hybrid system in the beginning especially for those people who are in the remote areas and persons who are overseas and are “planning on having an investment here in Guyana, you can submit that application online using the virtual single window and so this not only important to us to facilitate the ease of doing business but to Government and the Ministry it is very important for the purposes of transparency and accountability,” she explained.
She noted that one of the unique features of the system is that it is time-bound and therefore they are not trying to pass Legislation or implement an IT system that would ultimately get stuck still. “So we are applying time-bounds to all of the Agencies so that people have to respond in a particular time and if they do not respond in a particular time their approval will be deemed to be granted and so we are removing all subjectivity from the system so no Guyanese or Investor does not have to fear any form of subjectivity or do not have to fear any public official will deny their application,” she stated. Rodrigues added: “So it removes any bias from the system, it removes all subjectivity, and if the application is one that can be facilitated, it will be passed within a certain amount of time, it also remove any form of corruption from the system.”
Minister of Housing and Water, Collin Croal who expressed gratitude for having the platform on board said that the contract is being awarded to a consortium of companies based in Guyana, North America, and the United Arab Emirates. He noted that the IT solution which will ease doing business in Guyana will have a server, a network infrastructure and will have security solutions, hardware, and software maintenance and repairs.
Croal added that the contracted firm, “will have access to the work that is being done here by the Central Housing and Planning Authority and they are required to map and re-engineer the planning and development process and this is important because throughout the implementation, one has to keep reassessing and examine if we have to redesign or re-engineer.” It was noted that the scope of the project will be executed along five principles providing a one window access which would allow the CH&PA to act as a single point of entry for planning and development applications.
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