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General News of Monday, 20 April 2020

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Akufo-Addo's lockdown lift: What you can and cannot do

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, got to the homes of Ghanaians for the 7th time on Sunday, April 19, with another update on the fight against the Coronavirus and adopted measures of government to tackle that.

In a live telecast, he gave an up to date outline of the country's progress, detailing among other things, Ghana’s ability to undertake aggressive contact tracing, an enhanced capacity to test, and the expansion of the number of treatment and isolation centres in the country.

In view of that, he announced an end to a three-week partial lockdown imposed on some parts of the country.

What this DOES NOT mean, however, is that all other directives have been reversed.

Here is the breakdown of President Akufo-Addo's message, detailing what IS and IS NOT allowed, as per the president's latest message.

What is ALLOWED

The enactment of the Imposition of Restrictions Act 2020 meant that everyone resident in the affected areas in Greater Accra and Ashanti Regions must stay at home for the next two weeks.

“However, if you must go out, it must only be to get essential items such as food, medicine, water, undertake banking transactions, or to use public toilet facilities. But, as much as possible, stay at home.” the President explained.

With that taken off, it means that among other things, persons who otherwise were required to stay home; persons other than essential workers, food providers and frontline workers, can now move around without movement restrictions.

What is NOT ALLOWED

President Akufo-Addo was clear!

"Lifting these restrictions does not mean we are letting our guard down. All other measures are still firmly in place. For the avoidance of doubt, the earlier measures announced on Wednesday, 15th March, which have been extended, are still very much in force and have not been relaxed. I am demanding even greater adherence to these measures." He said.

These things are still in effect and are expected to be adhered to by all Ghanaians. This means no Ghanian, is expected to go against any of these:

Ban on all public, social gatherings

The suspension of all public gatherings, including conferences, workshops, funerals, parties, nightclubs, drinking spots, beaches, festivals, political rallies, religious activities and sporting events still holds.

Schools closed

All educational facilities, private and public, are to remain closed.



Social distancing

1. Businesses and other workplaces can continue to operate, observing staff management and workplace protocols with the view to achieving social distancing and hygiene protocols.


2. Operators of public transport, including our buses, trotros and taxis, are to continue to run with a minimum number of passengers, as they have been doing for the last three weeks in maintaining social distancing. They must also continue to ensure the maintenance of enhanced hygienic conditions in all vehicles and terminals, by providing, amongst others, hand sanitizers, running water and soap for washing of hands. Domestic airlines are required to adhere to the same protocols.


3. Markets are supposed to maintain the safety protocols and social distancing protocols

4. The Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, together with Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies, will continue to implement measures to enhance conditions of hygiene in markets across the country, and expand the policy of alternate-days-for-alternative-products to improve social distancing in all markets.

Closure of borders

The country's borders have been closed for two more weeks.

Compulsory mask wearing

"I have, thus, signed an Executive Instrument, to extend the closure of our borders for two (2) more weeks, beginning Monday, 20th April.

Everyone is encouraged to wear a mask wherever they go. Business owners and service providers (barber, a hairdresser, a tailor, a taxi driver, a trotro driver and his ‘mate’, a shop keeper, a food seller) are expected to use masks"

What Ghanaians are still entitled to:

1. Free water

All Ghanaians are still entitled to free water for three months; April, May and June.


2. Free electricity for the vulnerable and 50% slash for all customers

Government is fully absorbing electricity bills for one million active lifeline customers and is granting a fifty percent (50%) subsidy on electricity bills of all other customers, using their March 2020 bill as their benchmark, for the months of April, May and June. In total, the relief on electricity will amount to someone billion cedis (GH¢1.02 billion).


3. Health workers and Micro and small businesses are still enjoying motivational allowances and assistance respectively.

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