MP welcomes decision to reopen land borders

The Member of Parliament (MP) for Ketu South Constituency in the Volta Region, Abla Dzifa Gomashie, has welcomed the decision of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to reopen land borders from January 1, 2022.

The recommendation, which was addressed to ECOWAS Heads of State, included the effective and efficient implementation of harmonised instructions at the borders, mutual recognition of Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) tests for COVID-19, and the harmonisation of their period of validity.

The land borders of ECOWAS member states were closed following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in the region in 2020.

Madam Gomashie expressed satisfaction over the decision of ECOWAS to reopen the land borders because she had been calling for the opening of ECOWAS land borders and did not believe they were closed due to COVID-19 pandemic.

“I have to be consistent, I have said on many platforms I do not even believe it is because of COVID-19 the borders was closed but be that as it may, it has brought untold hardships to my constituents for two years because it is one major source of income for them.Unfortunately, the government did not take any decision on what social interventions it has put in place to fill the gap in the period it was closed.

“I recall during the COVID-19 lockdown in 2020which affected the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area and the Greater Kumasi Metropolitan Area, the state provided food for the underprivileged to mitigate the impact but what happened in my constituency and other border communities was a lockdown. I felt where the decision was taken to lockdown the place, they should have taken decision on what interim measures to take in order to cushion the people in border communities from suffering,” Madam Gomashie said.

According to her, it had been extremely difficult, coupled with force majeure of tidal waves coming at the same time, had telling effect on them, inconsistencies in messages made her skeptical but was hopeful reopening of borders would make her constituents relieved.

Madam Gomashie observed that the people in Ketu South and all the other border communities would be breathing a sigh of relief, almost like their very lives were being suffocated out of them and “if the rope on their throat is released, they will be excited, and on behalf of my constituents, we are grateful to ECOWAS for taking the decisionwhich we are hoping will come to fruition”. -GNA

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