Mad rush for Covid-19 jab …ahead of Ghana-Nigeria play-off

Scores of people last Friday stormed the Accra Sports Stadium to take their Covid-19 shots, a prerequisite to attend the blistering Ghana-Nigeria World Cup play-off in Ghana.

The exercise, which was held during the Hearts of Oak-Asante Kotoko Presidential Cup match, came off 72 hours after the Ministry of Youth and Sports directed the National Sports Authority (NSA) and the Ghana Football Association (GFA) to ensure strict adherence to COVID-19 protocols during the World Cup cracker.

Only fully-vaccinated fans would be admitted to the play-off, first leg of which takes place at the Cape Coast Sports Stadium on March 25.

The Ghana Health Service (GHS) is also expected to mount vaccination centres at the Kumasi, Cape Coast, Takoradi and Tamale stadia – one week before the Ghana-Nigeria cracker.

When the Times Sports visited the Accra stadium on Friday, avid football fans, food vendors and petty traders were seen in queues waiting for their shots.

A good number of the people who spoke to the Times Sports said they were there to have their first shot, but insisted they were geared-up to make themselves available for the second.

“I live close to the stadium and I’m happy the government has brought this to our doorstep. I’m eager to take the jab to enable me go for the Ghana-Nigeria game; a game I don’t want to miss for anything,” said 37-year-old Daniel NiiNoi. Others in the queue shared similar sentiments.

But for Doris Amankwah, a petty trader, she was told that without showing evidence of taking the vaccine, she would not be permitted to sell at the stadium.

“I was not eager to take the vaccine, but I have no choice now because I want to come and sell at the Accra stadium and also continue to the Cape Coast Stadium for the big match,” she added.

Other people who spoke to the Times Sports said they were informed by friends and relatives of the vaccination exercise at the stadium, and had come to have their shots.

The fans are expected to get their second dose before the Ghana-Nigeria mammoth game, later this month.

The Ministry’s directive is part of measures to control the spread of the deadly virus in the country.

BY JOHN VIGAH

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