Let’s fight COVID-19 together -President tasks Ghanaians

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has urged Ghanaians to put their shoulders to the wheels to support the fight against the coronavirus disease, as the pandemic picks up pace around the world.   In a televised address on Sunday night, the President announced a number of measures that must be followed, including the suspension of all public gatherings.   President Akufo-Addo has directed the Attorney General to submit immediately to Parliament, an emergency legislation in accordance with the Constitution to embody the new measures in place.    He has further directed the Minister of Health to exercise his powers under the Public Health Act and issue an Executive Instrument to govern the measures.   As part of the new measures to control the spread of the disease is a temporal closure of all universities, high schools, and basic schools, including private schools.   The closure took effect from yesterday. Schools are expected to remain closed till further notice.   However, Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) and West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) candidates will be allowed to attend school to prepare for their examination, but with prescribed social distancing protocols. The Ministry of Education, in collaboration with the Ministry of Communication, has been tasked to roll out distance learning programmes.   President Akufo-Addo also announced the suspension of funerals, conferences, workshops, festivals, political rallies, sporting events, and religious activities such as service in churches and mosques for the next four weeks.   Although private burials had been exempted, he said the number of people to attend such events should not exceed 25.   “Establishments such as supermarkets, shopping malls, restaurants, night clubs, hotels and drinking spots should observe enhanced hygiene procedures by providing amongst others, hand sanitisers, running water and soap for washing hands.”   “The Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development should coordinate with the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies measures to enhance conditions of hygiene in markets across the country.”   “The Ministry of Transport should work with the transport unions and private and public transport operators to ensure enhanced hygienic conditions in all vehicles and terminals, by providing, amongst others, hand sanitisers, running water and soap for washing of hands,” he said.   President Akufo-Addo said the measures announced would be subject to constant review and enhancement if necessary and expressed the government’s commitment to do whatever possible to prevent the spread of the disease.  
BY YAW KYEI

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