The Government of Ghana has banned nearly all public gatherings for the next four weeks in order to contain the novel coronavirus as the number of confirmed cases in the country has risen to six.
In a late-night broadcast, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo banned among other school gatherings as well as social, political and religious gatherings.
This near lockdown comes in less than a week since the government set aside $100 to tackle the raging virus.
“All public gatherings, including conferences, workshops, funerals, festivals, political rallies, sporting events and religious activities, such as services in churches and mosques, have been suspended for the next four (4) weeks. Private burials are permitted, but with limited numbers, not exceeding twenty-five (25) in attendance;
All Universities, Senior High Schools, and basic schools, i.e. public and private schools, will be closed Monday, 16th March, 2020, till further notice. The Ministry of Education, in collaboration with the Ministry of Communication, has been tasked to roll out distance learning programmes. However, BECE and WASSCE candidates will be allowed to attend school to prepare for their examinations, but with prescribed social distancing protocols,” the President directed.
However, the President exempted businesses and workplaces from the ban, advising that they observe enhanced hygiene and prescribed social distancing protocols.
“Businesses and other workplaces can continue to operate, but should observe prescribed social distancing between patrons and staff… Establishments, such as supermarkets, shopping malls, restaurants, night clubs, hotels and drinking spots, should observe enhanced hygiene procedures by providing, amongst others, hand sanitizers, running water and soap for washing of hands,” he emphasized in the broadcast to the nation.
Many have praised the President for the decisive decision calling on people to adhere to the directives so as help the government contain the virus.