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Regional News of Saturday, 9 May 2020

Source: Michael Oberteye, Contributor

Use recovered covid-19 persons for education on pandemic – Nii Teye Amankwah

Divisional Chief of the Gbetsile Stool in the Kpone Traditional Area of the Greater Accra Region, Nii Teye Kojo Amankwah Sune I has suggested that government should consider using persons who have recovered from the covid-19 disease to educate the public on the outbreak.

The chief said, this, rather than stigmatizing such persons, could contribute meaningfully to the fight against the pandemic.

According to him, recovered persons should be involved in educational activities on covid-19 to share their experiences with the general public.

“This is the time we need them (recovered persons) most so that they will come and brief us on how they got in touch with the virus and how they were able to recover from it so that we can learn from it in case of any eventuality,” he opined.

The Divisional Chief questioned the rationale behind stigmatizing patients or suspected infected persons of the coronavirus disease and called on the general public to desist from such practices.

Teye Kojo Amankwah Sune I made the call when he distributed assorted food items including bags of rice, tin tomatoes, cooking oil and sanitizers to the vulnerable in society.

The Divisional Chief on behalf of the Gbetsile stool and the Paramount Chief of the Kpone Traditional Area and President of the Kpone Traditional Council, Nii Tetteh Otu II on Wednesday, May 6, 2020 presented some relief items to about 200 vulnerable people in Gbetsile and Number 1.

Many Ghanaians continue to face economic hardships as a result of the pandemic and the chief’s assistance was in response to difficulties currently being experienced by most people resulting mainly from the interruption in commercial activities.

The distribution followed donations from former President John Dramani Mahama and Corporate Organizations including Tounton Cocoa Processing, Tema Tank Farm, CEN Power, Regional Coordinating Council, Barry Calleabaut, Aska Energy, Ghapoha and Olam Grains, to support the traditional council’s fight against the pandemic.

Though the partial lockdown has been lifted, the chief expressed concern about the increasing economic hardships resulting from the epidemic.

“Although the partial lockdown has been lifted, this covid-19 has actually put hardship on the people of many of the communities due to the fact that we were actually not expecting such a pandemic which has affected the whole world,” said Nii Teye Kojo Amankwah Sune I with the conviction that more vulnerable people needed to be assisted to soften their burden.

With 4,012 confirmed cases with 18 deaths and 323 recoveries, Nii Teye Kojo Amankwah Sune I lauded the president’s directives aimed at curbing the pandemic and was convinced Ghana could easily eradicate the covid-19 if the directives were strictly adhered to.

The chief also called on government to collaborate more with traditional authorities to combat the spread of the covid-19 pandemic in the country.

He said this kind of cooperation would encourage chiefs and other traditional leaders to play effective roles in the fight against the pandemic.

“I’m entreating the government to involve the traditional authorities [in the fight against covid-19] so that we can also play our roles meaningfully to help it to stop the spread of the pandemic,” he said.

The Divisional Chief also admonished the general public to ensure strict compliance to the laid down preventive protocols including the stay-home directive and the habit of proper and regular handwashing to contain the spread of the virus, adding that the traditional council was actively educating the general public, particularly in his traditional area to heed all the safety protocols and “all necessary measures put in place.”

“Covid-19 is real but we can stop it,” he said.

He called for intensified education as part of efforts to combat the disease.
A beneficiary and recipient of the items, Madam Mercy Amekudzie expressed her delight at the gesture and called for more support for the vulnerable in the communities.

According to her, the onset of the disease has put fear in the people and their children and hoped that the pandemic is eradicated soon to pave way for economic empowerment of the citizenry.

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