Ghanaians Witness Partial Eclipse

partial eclipseGhana yesterday experienced a partial solar eclipse throughout the country, except in the Upper West Region where the clouds gathered and there was no sign of the phenomenon.

The two-hour phenomenon started from 11.33am to 1. 30pm and gained full face of 85 percent of the sun at 1.24pm.
The last time Ghana experienced an eclipse was on March 29, 2006, a total eclipse which caused complete darkness for three minutes.
A visit by The Ghanaian Times to some parts of Accra showed persons eagerly watching the sun as the moon covered most part of it.

At the Kwame Nkrumah Circle, on-lookers were seen watching the sun with their sunshades and others trying to take shots with their phones.

Surprisingly, an old man who told the Times that he had witnessed the phenomenon on three occasions, was seen watching the eclipse from a bowl full of water.

Prince Yeboah, a hawker, was also seen making business with his sun glass as he gave it out to passers-by at 10 pesewas per glance.
A former Executive Director of the Centre for Remote Sensing and Geographic Information Systems (GERSGIS), Professor Emmanuel Amamoo-Otchere Snr, in an interview, explained that a partial solar eclipse was one where there was a maximum partial cover of the Sun by the moon.

He said eclipse contained harmful rays which could destroy the tissue of the eyes when watched directly without a shade.
Professor Amamoo-Otchere  said the phenomenon had a spiritual dimension, dated to the days of Jesus Christ on Good Friday, around 3p.m. stating that “it was reported that, when Jesus was about to die, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour”.

He interpreted the eclipse to mean, “our society is becoming too negative,” adding that the eclipse was a sign that Ghanaians must emerge from pessimisms and think positively.

David Yarboi-Tetteh reports from Cape Coast that residents in the municipality enthusiastically watched and experienced the partial solar eclipse.

Children were not left out as they were aided by their parents to view the rare movement of the moon around the sun.
At the Sunday Market at Kotokuraba in Cape Coast, there was brisk business for sellers of the specially designed glasses as many people patronised the device to view the sun.

Others went to their homes between 12 noon and 1pm after church service with one woman exclaiming, “I need to be at home to watch it”.

Street lights in the town were turned on in anticipation of total darkness as a result of the announcement of the partial eclipse.
Some enthusiastic people who spoke to The Ghanaian Times expressed disappointment at the turn of events and said that their opinion was based on the fact that there would be total darkness for about a minute.

Akosua Hayford, a trader, told The Ghanaian Times, that unlike the 2006 solar eclipse which was experienced in total darkness, yesterday’s experience was equally refreshing.

From Koforidua Ama Tekyiwaa Ampadu-Nyarko reports that many residents became conscious of the eclipse when the sunny atmosphere begun to change.

Worshippers who had closed from church stood outside with their specialised shades trying to have a glimpse of the already partial eclipse.
However, many people had to borrow the specialised shades to watch the eclipse.

A National Service person, Jean Amenyaglo told the Times that the specialised shades which were sold between GH¢3 and GH¢9 was too expensive and therefore, people fetched water into bowls to watch the phenomenon.

He said the eclipse was nostalgic, saying he initially experienced it when he was in the Junior High School.
A student, Priscilla Anibear told the Times that she bought the shades at GH¢9 because she was eager to watch the phenomenon adding that it was a wonderful experience.

Joshua Yalleh, a child, gladly said “it makes you have a feel of God’s creation which is so wonderful’.
Kwadwo B. Donkor reports from Kumasi that the much awaited partial eclipse of the sun came to pass with little or no activity in the Ashanti Regional capital, particularly in the Central Business District of Adum.

The lack of interest could be attributed to the low publicity given the phenomenon, coupled with the fact that it occurred on a Sunday at a time when many people were about closing from church service.

With the exception of some of the congregants of the Wesley Methodist Cathedral,  at Adum, who were seen sharing the special sun glasses made for the viewing among themselves, the rest of the streets were virtually deserted with a few people seen showing little interest in it.
Those who managed to get the sun glasses were passing them to their friends to also view the eclipse as it occurred.

This reporter bumped into a group of youngsters, who did not have the prescribed sun glasses but were instead, using a black normal sun glasses to view the partial eclipse.

When Times inquired from them why they were using such sun glasses, they said they could not get the shades to buy.
From Wa, Cliff Ekuful reports that the partial solar eclipse was not experienced in the Wa municipality.
The phenomenon did not occur and people were disappointed.

With the exception of a few cloudy patches in the sky, nothing was there to indicate that there was an occurrence of partial eclipse in the Wa Township.

Some residents who spoke to the Ghanaian Times expressed disappointment at the situation as most of them said they were made to believe that they would experience the phenomenon.

According to them, the dark patches that occurred in the skies were nothing but a regular occurrence which could not be described as a phenomenon.

Residents in the sunyani municipality in the Brongo Ahafo Region did not take keen interest in watching the solar eclipse reports Daniel Dzirasah.

Their reason was that the GH¢4 sun shade was to view the eclipse.    Others did not know where to acquire the lense.
However, a few people were spotted watching the eclipse, using polythene bags, old CD plates as well as X-ray pictures.

Kezia Adomah Dankwa, who was seen watching with old CD plate, told the Times that she did not see the need to cough GH¢4 to buy the lense to watch the eclipse.

Kafui Gati reports from Ho that Presidents of the Ho Municipality went about their normal duties as the country observed the partial eclipse of the sun yesterday.

Shape and stores were seen opened and brisk business went on unlike 2006 when the total elcipse of the sun occurred and stores were locked up for fear of a catastroph.

This, notwithstanding, when the Times went round the Ho Township, some pockets of people were seen observing the eclipse using one sun shades in turns.

These who did not have the sun shades upon advise from experienced citizens used rubber buckets full of water to observe the scene.

In a telephone conversation with the Volta Regional Minister, Nii Laryee Afotey-Agbo, he said the phenomenon was a sign of God’s greatness.  By Charles Amankwa

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