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Politics of Tuesday, 21 April 2020


Why the rush to lift the lockdown? – NDC’s Jehu-Appiah asks Akufo-Addo

President of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo President of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo

Public health physician and a member of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) technical team on covid-19, Dr Jehu-Appiah has said there was no need for President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to lift the partial lockdown on some areas believed to be hotspots for the novel coronavirus.

According to him, “We shouldn’t rush when the lockdown is doing well” instead, we should embark on community surveillance and aggressive testing in all regions.

The NDC technical team member on covid-19 noted that when the country is in lockdown, it helps contain the spread of the virus as well as provides time and space for aggressive public health response which helps in the country’s case management.

Due to the upsurge in the contraction of the disease locally, he advocated for aggressive testing adding that, government must as a matter of urgency institute 16 testing centers in the country.

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in his 7th national address on the Coronavirus pandemic noted that the partial lockdown imposed on the Greater Accra and Greater Kumasi Metropolitan areas as well as Kasoa and Tema has been lifted effective Monday, April 20.

According to the president, the decision was influenced by several factors including Ghana’s ability to undertake aggressive contact tracing, an enhanced capacity to test, expansion of the number of treatment and isolation centres as well as the impact of the virus on the poor and vulnerable in the affected areas.

Reacting to this on Citi TV, Dr Jehu-Appiah said that the action taken by the president was not based on technical advice, but a need to score political points.

“We thought the lockdown was going to be for the next two weeks at least for us to contain the virus and be able to aggressively test and maybe do some contact tracing…the reasons given for the lifting was not adequate because we have been told by the ministry of finance that we have enough money to go round to solve the issue so what is it? If it is for technical advice, I believe the president has put together a very competent technical group…so the concentration was not technical. I believe the concentration was below technical, let’s say political or economic,” he stated.

The number of people who have tested positive for the coronavirus has risen to 1,042 out of which 99 persons recovered.