The President of the National Union of Ghana Students in Wuhan, China Samson Opoku says although students are calm following support from the governments of Ghana and China, they are still not relenting on efforts to get as many students back home.
Ghanaian students in Wuhan, China have been calling for evacuation following the outbreak of the virus but the Government of Ghana earlier stated it had no immediate plans to do so.
Samson Opoku in a Citi News interview said they are now depending on the support government sends to them.
“We have not registered any case among us. The incidence rate is coming down but no one can really tell when those of us in Wuhan, the epicenter this whole thing is going to end so we will continue to take the government support as they monitor in whatever form till the whole thing comes to an end because even the authorities cannot tell us when it will come to an end. The monies and the food items the government sent to us, all of us have received it so we are just coping and waiting on the government to keep monitoring the situation and monitoring the whole situation globally with the continuous engagement of our embassy so we see the way forward,” he said.
Government vindicated in decision not to evacuate Ghanaians
Earlier this morning, Thursday, March 12, 2020, the Minister for Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah stated that the decision by the government not to evacuate people from China in the wake of the Coronavirus outbreak has helped in preventing the disease from entering Ghana on the Citi Breakfast Show.
According to him, despite the criticism from various stakeholders to do otherwise, the government will keep following the advice of the World Health Organisation (WHO) in doing everything possible to combat the disease should Ghana record any confirmed case.
“From the beginning, some of these countries that are now closing their borders totally said they were going to evacuate people from the epicenters when the advice was that, it is better to contain it within those places. So, you notice that for a country like Ghana, we decided not to evacuate [our residents from China]. There was a backlash. But what has happened is that, from that decision not to evacuate, we are of the view that it has contributed to holding this at bay. While some of the countries took a different route, which was to evacuate, now data is beginning to suggest most likely that they may have imported it from some of those places,” he said in an interview on the Citi Breakfast Show on Thursday.
“We will follow the advice of the World Health Organisation (WHO) who we are working with us in Accra and the Ghanaian experts who are quite skilled in the management of some of these public health outbreaks. And we are optimistic that it will serve us well,” he added.
WHO declares Coronavirus outbreak as pandemic
The World Health Organisation (WHO) yesterday, March 11, 2020, labeled the outbreak as a pandemic.
WHO said it had been assessing this outbreak around the clock and was concerned with the alarming levels of the spread and severity of the disease.
“We have therefore made the assessment that COVID-19 can be characterized as a pandemic,” the Director-General of the WHO, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said at a press briefing on Wednesday afternoon.
“In the past two weeks, the number of cases of COVID-19 outside China has increased to 13-fold and the number of affected countries has tripled. There are now more than 118,000 cases in 114 countries, and 4,291 people have lost their lives,” noted Dr. Ghebreyesus.
Already, cases of the coronavirus that emerged in the central Chinese city of Wuhan in late December 2019 are being reported daily around the world.
Currently, more than 4,700 people have died globally from COVID-19.
Also, more than 129,000 infections have been confirmed in dozens of countries, according to the WHO.
In Africa, South Africa has the highest recorded cases of the virus after it announced six new cases of the virus last week, bringing the total of recorded cases in that country to 13. North African countries have also recorded nearly 100 cases.