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General News of Monday, 30 March 2020


We are going after coronavirus - Oppong Nkrumah on lockdown

Information Minister, Kojo Oppong-Nkrumah Information Minister, Kojo Oppong-Nkrumah

The Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, has revealed that the motive behind the lockdown announced by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is to upscale testing for coronavirus in Ghana.

He said government is undertaking “enhanced testing” across the country to stem the spread of the virus.

So far, the country has recorded a total of 152 cases of the viral disease.

Seventy-nine were confirmed from mandatory quarantine in Accra with 63 confirmed from routine surveillance.

A two-week lockdown was announced by President Akufo-Addo on Friday to make sure the virus does not spread any further.

Speaking on TV3’s New Day on Monday as the much-anticipated lockdown starts, Mr Oppong Nkrumah says testing will be conducted on all contacts of the infected persons traced and even extended to households they lived in.

He said the experts have conducted a risk analysis, which has revealed that persons from Covid-19 epicenter countries may have entered the country with some viral loads even before the country’s borders were closed, in an earlier announcement by President Akufo-Addo on Sunday, March 22.

“We will go out aggressively and test them as well,” the Minister, who is also the Member of Parliament for Ofoase Ayirebi Constituency, stressed.

He noted that all this is aimed at “going after the virus” and not wait for the virus to infect persons as previously the case.

He added that at-risk populations in the neighbourhood of hotspots so far identified in the risk analysis will have health officials going in to conduct tests.

“So that you are not waiting for the garden man [or] driver to show symptoms but you go after it.”

How many test kits does Ghana have?

He indicated that Ghana is still receiving stock of the test kits needed for the exercise.

But so far, he mentioned, at least 30,000 kits have been received for the exercise.

Mr Oppong Nkrumah said priority will be given to frontline health workers in the distribution of any equipment needed for the fight against Covid-19.

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