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ASSESSMENT OF THE IMPACT OF E-GOVERNMENT ON PUBLIC SERVICE DELIVERY IN CAMEROON

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ASSESSMENT OF THE IMPACT OF E-GOVERNMENT ON PUBLIC SERVICE DELIVERY  IN CAMEROON

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background of the Study

Everywhere there is a government, it is to provide public services and improve the living standards of the vast majority of people. But when the digital era started to spread over the world and radical groups calling for increased use of ICTs in both personal and professional domains formed, world governments jumped on the bandwagon. Private sector businesses significantly depended on the internet and the World Wide Web for their daily operations during the 1990s dotcom boom. The private sector's greater use of ICTs led to higher rates of accountability and efficiency, which gave the public sector hope that their bad reputation for accountability, transparency, and inefficiency might be improved. Consequently, the adoption of e-governance turned into a necessary modification in the provision of public goods and services.

Chukwuemeka, Okeke and Onwuchekwa (2018) stress that public service is the direct and indirect services provided by government to its nationals or residents within a country. They also added that Government provides public service directly by engaging in production, distribution of service and indirectly by financing services rendered to the citizenry by third parties. Public service is associated with the totality of facilities or amenities provided by government to the masses. According to Chukwuemeka, Ubochi and Okechukwu (2017), service delivery is the extent to which a unit or department of governmental organization discharge their assigned or statutory responsibilities. The accomplishment of objectives or tasks delegated to government ministries or agencies is determined by the quality of services provided. Because it involves responding to citizen needs in a timely and effective manner, service delivery is a sign of good government. Chukwuemeka et al, (2018) noted that an important indicator of governance quality in Cameroon and anywhere in the world is the public service delivery. Furthermore, Drew & Weaver (2016), also stress that poor ranking on the governance quality index is partially or substantially a reflection of poor public service delivery. The government through various ministries and agencies render public services in dynamic environment which exert influence on its methods, procedures and processes of meeting the needs, yearnings and aspirations of the populace. Sodhi (2016) averred that for the delivery of public services, the interaction between government agencies/bodies and citizens takes place in a government department or an administrative institution, but with emerging Information and Communication Technologies, it is possible to locate service delivery centres nearer to the citizen. Some governmental ministries, agencies, parastatals and departments in Cameroon still use analogue means of rendering public services to the masses. Groshek (2019) noted that the e-governance policy option has been adopted by the Cameroonian public service in recent years as a solution to the sector's chronic backwardness and degradation.

E-governance depicts a situation where key activities of governance are done using information technology or electronic devices. According to Thabit and Yaser (2019), e-governance is basically the application of electronic tools to control the activities of government in a simple, ethical, accountable and transparent manner to achieve predetermined objectives. Lawan and Muhammad (2018) asserted that e-governance is a process of reform in the way managements work, share information; engage people and deliver services to external and internal clients for the benefit of populace and it include e-Services such as e-Tax systems, e-Registration, e-Payment system among others. In addition, Ojo (2014) asserted the features of e-governance includes the abilities of citizens to provide feedback to various government offices, subscription based list services or E-newsletter that keeps citizens and other agencies informed; online discussion forum or chat rooms to discuss policy issues. Similar to this, Amagoh (2015) stress that while Cameroon begin its e-governance initiatives in the early 2000s, the country was still in the early stages of e-governance diffusion among its population. However, several efforts have been made by Cameroonian  government to encourage the spread of e-governance through out the country.Therefore, a survey will be conducted in order to assess the impact of E-government on public service delivery  in Cameroon.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

The standard of public service and e-government in Cameroon is plagued by a number of issues. The e-government system's quality comes first (Chen, 2008). The state of e-government devices is still a website profile with out-of-date information regarding normative events, organizational structure, and general information. Rather of being informative and engaging, it is more akin to a presentation (Hermana, 2012). Rarely can civil workers locate details of publicly available material to read and download from government websites. However, it is the responsibility of the government to deliver public services that satisfy the needs of the masses and also encourage them to pay taxes and other levies. Additionally, Amoke (2020) stressed that service delivery to the people is a key function of government but over the years, there has been very poor service delivery by the public sector in Cameroon. In order to ensure quality services delivery, government has strategized many policies and programmes such as e-governance. the implementation of e-government does not encourage the changes in serving and working culture in the government institutions. Values and cultures still run in the same ways: outdated, not customer oriented, slow, rigid, and collusive. In this case, most governments are highly bureaucratically fragmented and internally fiercely resistant to change (Chen, 2008). As a result, the goals of e-government applications to speed up and improve the efficiency of government remain unattainable. Since e-government is a management agenda rather than a technological agenda, utilizing technology must be accompanied by the development of new working practices (OECD, 2005). Thus, it is in the light of these that the study seeks to assess the impact of E-government on public service delivery  in Cameroon.

1.3  Objectives of the Study

The main purpose of this study is to assess the impact of E-government on public service delivery  in Cameroon. Specifically, the study will;

1.Determine the extent e-governance has been adopted in the Cameroon public service.

2.Determine whether the adoption of e-Governance will improve employee engagement and efficiency the Cameroon public service.

3.Examine the relationship between e-Governance and quality service delivery in Cameroon public service.

4.Identify the factors which affects the adoption of e-Governance in the Cameroon public service. 1.4 Research Questions

The following questions have been prepared for the study:

1.        To what extent has e-governance been adopted in the Cameroon public service?

2.        Will the adoption of e-Governance improve employee engagement and efficiency in the Cameroon public service?

3.        What is the relationship between e-Governance and quality service delivery in the Cameroon public service?

4.        What factors affect the adoption of e-Governance in the Cameroon public service?

1.5  Significance of the Study

In order to enhance service delivery, the general public will also be made more aware of and sensitive to the advantages of e-governance. Furthermore, subsequent researchers will use it as a literature review. This means that other students who may decide to conduct studies in this area will have the opportunity to use this study as available literature that can be subjected to critical review. Invariably, the result of the study contributes immensely to the body of academic knowledge with regard to an assessment of the impact of E-government on public service delivery  in Cameroon.

1.6 Scope of the study

The scope of this study is boarded on an assessment of the impact of E-government on public service delivery  in Cameroon. Empirically, this study will determine the extent e-governance has been adopted in the Cameroon public service, determine whether the adoption of e-Governance will improve employee engagement and efficiency the Cameroon public service, examine the relationship between e-Governance and quality service delivery in Cameroon public service and identify the factors which affects the adoption of e-Governance in the Cameroon public service. Geographically, the study will be delimited to civil servants in Yaoundé, Cameroon.

1.7 Limitation of the study

In the course of carrying out this study, the researcher experienced some constraints, which included time constraints, financial constraints, language barriers, and the attitude of the respondents. In addition, there was the element of researcher bias. Here, the researcher possessed some biases that may have been reflected in the way the data was collected, the type of people interviewed or sampled, and how the data gathered was interpreted thereafter. The potential for all this to influence the findings and conclusions could not be downplayed.

More so, the findings of this study are limited to the sample population in the study area, hence they may not be suitable for use in comparison to other schools, local governments, states, and other countries in the world.

 1.8 Definition of Terms

E-governance: is basically the application of electronic tools to control the activities of government in a simple, ethical, accountable and transparent manner to achieve predetermined objectives.

Public service:  is the direct and indirect services provided by government to its nationals or residents within a country(Onwuchekwa 2018).

ICT:  Information and communication technologies is defined as a diverse set of technological tools and resources used to transmit, store, create, share or exchange information.

Delivery: is the act of making a service or information available to people.


This material content is developed to serve as a GUIDE for students to conduct academic research



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  • Reference(s):

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  • Methodology: Yes available


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