It is my view that the One Week COVID-19 Lock Down extension by the President Nana Addo is woefully inadequate
Ghana is in the war front, battling the dreaded novel Coronavirus disease which was created by man to destroy man.
This battle by the small West African country is being led by the President and Commander In-Chief of the Ghana Armed Forces, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo who has by far shown his unflinching commitment to the fight.
The President addressed the nation last night (9th April, 2020) at 22:30GMT; his 6th in the series of Updates on measures put in place by the government to fight COVID-19.
At first, it seemed like COVID-19 would never get to Ghana; hence, our leaders were not so stringent with measures put in place to prevent it from entering into the country.
However, when the first two cases (Vertical or imported) were recorded, the government had to fix its feet firmly into the ground. And that is what led to the closure of schools (private and public), the ban on public gatherings and the closure of Ghana’s border (Land, Air, Sea).
These measures put in place still did not seem to serve the ultimate purpose of preventing the spread of COVID-19. The President then announced a 2-week lock down of Ghana’s epicenters; Greater Accra and its environs and Greater Kumasi. These lock downs affected major towns bounding these epicenters including Kasoa, Tema and Dodowa for Greater Accra; and Ejisu, Abuakwa and Obuasi for Greater Kumasi.
Many were against the lock down as they wondered how hawkers who live from hand to mouth would survive; but it eventually went down on the 30th of March 2020 @ 01:00GMT.
After 11 days, the President announced an extension of the initial 14 days lock down by an additional 7 days when Ghana’s count of confirmed COVID-19 cases stood at 378 with 6 deaths and a number of recoveries.
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As a citizen and not a spectator, I strongly believe that the 1 Week extension is woefully inadequate if the government really wants to fight this pandemic that has taken the world by storm and causing a lot of havoc. I strongly believe so because of the number of people who are carrying the virus but are not aware of it.
I think that if we want to curb community spread, an additional 2 weeks would have done the trick since COVID-19 has an incubation period of 14 days.
One other thing we expected which didn’t come was an announcement of an allowance or risk package for some other front line staff. It will be recalled that during his 5th Address, he announced some juicy package for front line health workers who were actually involved in the COVID-19 fight. They would be exempted from taxes for three months; and half of their monthly salary would be added as bonus for their dedication towards the fight against COVID-19.
However, apart from the health care staff, we also have officers of the Ghana Immigration Service, the National Ambulance service and the team in charge of tracing contacts of infected persons.
They are also actively involved in Ghana’s fight against COVID-19 as the first two groups are the first point of contact by infected persons.
The Immigration officers were exposed to the disease at a time when the President had not announced a closure of the borders. And the ambulance service is called in anytime an individual begins showing symptoms of COVID-19.
Hence, it would have done a lot of good if the president had announced a package for these group of workers in his 6th Address to the nation. Well, let’s wait and see if this announcement will come in the 7th Update.
Desmond Kwamina Forson (Kwamina DEXTRO)Source || DePunch.com