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Regional News of Saturday, 27 March 2021

Source: King Solomon, Contributor

Open land borders - Jomoro MP to Akufo-Addo

The Member of Parliament for Jomoro Constituency, Dorcas Affo-Toffey has called on government to open the country's land borders.

Speaking on the floor of Parliament, she hinged on “the urgent need to reopen and regularize land border crossing at key entry points in the Jomoro Constituency such as Elubo, Jaway wharf, Newtown, Ellenda wharf and other border towns in Ghana.”

According to Madam Affo-Toffey, this move was necessitated by the distress her constituents are currently going through which include loss of capital, loss of livelihoods, decreased social cohesion, increased theft cases, emigration, hunger etc.

She stated that the Kotoka International Airport which accommodates comparatively huge traffic is in operation due to certain measures put in place to check entrants into the country with respect to COVID-19.

According to her, the Ghana Airports Company Limited reports on its website indicates that 2,110,593 passengers used the Kotoka International Airport in 2019 alone. She further stated that the British Broadcasting Cooperation (BBC) have it on their website that, an average number of 98,000 people enter Ghana through Kotoka International Airport every month since the COVID-19 period. These figures are extremely bigger than the 4000 people who entered Ghana through Ivory Coast per month before COVID-19.

According to the Member of Parliament for the Jomoro Constituency, all the measures put in place at Kotoka International Airport can be replicated at our borders except that, we can employ a competitive antigen testing entity whose pricing will be commensurate with current international market pricing unlike the exorbitant antigen testing regime at the Kotoka International Airport.

She further stated and I quote “I say this by taking into consideration the fewer entrants per month of persons using the land borders for trade and other businesses in comparison to the volumes of persons using the Kotoka International Airport per available statistics.”

She, therefore, called on the Government as a matter of urgency to open up the borders whilst stepping up adequate surveillance and effective monitoring of our borders.

For her, these measures if adhered to and instituted at our borders will not only help in reviving the dwindling socioeconomic activities but will also help in the fight against the virus. It will also further boost our Pan-African credentials as the champions of the ECOWAS protocols on the free movement of persons and goods which is cardinal to our integration agenda.

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