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Food vendors, fisherfolk, others exempted from COVID-19 lockdown

Food vendors, fisherfolk, others exempted from COVID-19 lockdown
FILE PHOTO

President Nana Akufo-Addo has imposed a two-week partial lockdown on Accra, Tema, Kasoa and Kumasi from Monday, March 30, 2020, 1 am.

These cities, which have been identified as the epicentres of the novel coronavirus in Ghana have been shut down as part of efforts to curb the spread of the disease.

Ghana currently has a total number of 137 recorded cases, with four deaths and two recoveries.

President Nana Akufo-Addo, in a national address on Friday, March 27, 2020 stated that “effective 1 am on Monday, 30th March, some forty-eight hours from now, I have imposed, pursuant to the powers granted the President of the Republic, under the Imposition of Restrictions Act, 2020 (Act 1012), restrictions on the movement of persons in the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area (GAMA, which includes Awutu Senya East), and the Greater Kumasi Metropolitan Area and contiguous districts, for a period of two (2) weeks, subject to review.”

He said the decision “will give us the opportunity to try to halt the spread of the virus, and scale-up effectively contact tracing of persons who have come into contact with infected persons, test them for the virus, and, if necessary, quarantine and isolate them for treatment, should they prove to have the virus.”

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He, however, made exemptions to this directive. Some essential service providers will not be forced to lock down.

The list of services to be exempted from the restrictions as announced by President Akufo-Addo are as follows:

  • Members of the Executive, Legislature and the Judiciary;
  • Production, distribution and marketing of food, beverages, pharmaceuticals, medicine, paper and plastic packages.
  • Environmental and sanitation activities;
  • VALCO staff
  • Road and Railway construction workers;
  • Mining workers;
  • Fisherfolk;
  • Members of the security agencies assigned lawful duties;
  • The staff of electricity, water, telecommunications, e-commerce and digital service providers; and
  • Fuel stations staff.

The Minister of Information subsequently took to Twitter to explain that the media is also part of those exempted from the restrictions.

Full list of affected areas 

In Greater Accra, the following areas will be affected:

1. Accra Metropolis;

2. Tema Metropolis;

3. Tema West Municipality;

4. Ledzokuku Municipality;

5. Krowor Municipality;

6. Adentan Municipality;

7. Ashiaman Municipality;

8. La-Nkwantanang-Madina Municipality;

9. La-Dade-Kotopon Municipality;

10. Okaikwei North Municipality;

11. Ablekuma North Municipality;

12. Ablekuma West Municipality;

13. Ablekuma Central Municipality;

14. Ayawaso East Municipality;

15. Ayawaso North Municipality;

16. Ayawaso West Municipality;

17. Ayawaso Central Municipality

18. Ga West Municipality;

19. Ga North Municipality;

20. Ga Central Municipality;

21. Ga South Municipality;

22. Ga East Municipality;

23. Korle-Klottey Municipality;

24. Weija/Gbawe Municipality;

25. Kpone Katamanso Municipality; and

26. Awutu Senya East Municipality.

In the Greater Kumasi Metropolitan Area and contiguous districts, the following areas are affected:

1. Kumasi Metropolis;

2. Asokwa Municipality;

3. Suame Municipality;

4. Old Tafo Municipality;

5. Oforikrom Municipality;

6. Asokore Mampong Municipality;

7. Kwadaso Municipality;

8. Atwima Nwabiagya Municipality;

9. Kwabre East Municipality;

10. Ejisu Municipality;

11. Afigya-Kwabre South District;

12. Bosomtwi District;

13. Atwima Kwanwoma District; and

14. Atwima Nwabiagya North District.

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Previous calls for lockdown

In as much as many groups were calling for a total lockdown of the country or the cities with the most number of cases of the novel coronavirus, the Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah said that the request for a lockdown is not a decision to be taken lightly.

According to him, President Nana Akufo-Addo had instructed the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta to conduct an economic impact assessment of potential lockdown measures on the country.

He also said the President was looking at all conditions before deciding on a lockdown or not.