Citizenry asked to exercise restraint in criticism on partial lockdown lift

The Dean of Graduate Studies at the Institute of Local Government, Dr Oduro Osae, has entreated the public to exercise restraint in their criticisms on the lifting of the partial lockdown and noted that the lifting on partial lockdown in the COVID-19 hotspots is timely and makes a lot of economic sense.

He indicated that the decision was based on data available to the President and the COVID-19 Response Team and thus underscored the need for the Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, to provide further explanations and breakdown of what the lifting meant to the average Ghanaian.

“If you look at the public jubilations and what’s happening in town, it’s like all the safety precautions have been relaxed, but we’re not out of the woods yet,” he cautioned following the lifting of the three-week ban on the “stay home’ directive of Greater Accra, Tema, Kasoa and Greater Kumasi by the President effective April 20, at 0100 hours.

According to Dr Osae, the reason for the partial lifting, the President stated was the nation’s ability to undertake aggressive contact tracing, enhanced testing, expansion of the number of treatment and isolation centres as well as the economic impact of COVID-19 pandemic on the poor and vulnerable in the affected areas.

He observed that there should be more public education and sensitisation on the implication of the lifting of restriction on movements whilst security personnel remained at the checkpoints to enforce the safety and social distancing directives.

“I urged the various Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies and Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development to enforce the social distancing and hygienic protocols at the various markets to avoid possible community spread of the virus.

“My greatest disappointment is the low arrest and prosecution of persons who breached the lockdown directives, I believe those who break such directives must be prosecuted to serve as a deterrent to others,” Dr Oduro-Osae lamented.

Ghana’s case count for COVID-19 now stands at 1,042 as at Sunday, April 19, with nine deaths and 99 persons fully recovering, after 68,591 test results were received. -GNA

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