eGov (eGovernment) means the provision of government information and services by means of the internet and other computer resources.
The industry is relatively new in most parts of Africa, and due to the fact that governments everywhere are usually under increasing pressure to meet new challenges that affects the quality of life of the people they serve, and also to evolve as the world evolves, to the advantage of their citizens, eGov is imperative for every government.
GovChat was founded in 2016 by Eldrid Jordaan. It is the largest civic engagement platform accessible online, initially for South Africans, via any mobile device or feature phones. It connects citizens with their public representatives almost instantly, actively drive solutions and fast tracks the implementation of government services.
It allows the citizens to actively participate in the growth process of the Government as it acts as a centralized hub, bringing all government and civic services together with cutting-edge conversational AI, intuitive design and ease of access. Accoridng to Busani Ngcaweni; the Director-General in the Presidency of South Africa, “GovChat connects, informs and empowers. A great platform for citizen management”
It also provides for an early warning system for the public representatives to connect easily with the citizens and keep the citizens informed through broadcast messaging, push notifications and private messages. It provides a complaint management system for local governments, with an automated escalation process for unattended queries.
GovChat’s clients are the government Communication and Information System (GCIS), the Department of Co-operative Governance Traditional Affairs and the Independent Electoral Commission and with the support from Capital Appreciation, it plans to scale its digital payments technology.
In 2018, the platform was expanded to Ghana after they reached an agreement to launch “GovChat Ghana” and this gave them a new milestone in its outreach to the African continent and they have developed a WhatsApp bot which interacts with citizens and enables them to report issues, make enquiries and rate services among other features.
At the moment, the platform continues to cultivate markets across the regions of the African continent to ensure that deeper connections are formed between citizens and their government.