Following the announcement of a lockdown of Accra, Kasoa, Tema and Kumasi, there have been a number of people mostly Kayayei who have left the capital to Bimbilla in the Nanumba North Municipality of the Northern region.
On Sunday, March 29, 2020, about six VIP buses carrying over 200 passengers were seen entering Bimbilla.
A COVID-19 taskforce formed by the Nanumba North Municipality directed all the buses to the Bimbilla Senior Hgh School where their temperatures were taken and sensitized on COVID-19 preventive measures.
The taskforce was made up of the police, military, BNI, Health workers and district assembly workers.
The Municipal Chief Executive for Nanumba North, Abdulai Yaqoub explained to Citi News the rationale for the exercise.
“Following the announcement that there will be a lockdown in Accra, we knew our brothers and sisters in Accra would definitely be coming home. So on Saturday, we had an emergency meeting and we decided that passengers in vehicles coming from Accra, all the occupants would be brought here for screening and advised and their contacts would be taken for follow up.”
Some of the Passengers in a Citi News interview welcomed the move describing it as necessary.
“The exercise is timely because we are coming from where the virus is and it’s good that they are doing this for us. We are going to be with our families and if this is not done, we can easily spread it to family members.”
“Accra is no longer safe and that is why we are running home. So if they’re taking our details to follow up later, it’s good because they can not just take your temperature and know that you are infested so it’s good for our own benefits,” one passenger said.
“I am home because we are no longer free to move about and feeding will be a problem. So I decided to come home now. In Accra, you can easily contract the virus,” another passenger said.
Coronavirus: Travel from Accra to northern Ghana increases at Neoplan station
Already, operators of the Neoplan station in Accra say they have been recording a spike in travel from Accra to Northern Region in the wake of the novel coronavirus detection in Ghana.
According to them, a significant number of travellers have been head porters, popularly known as kayayei.
A majority of them are known to migrate from northern Ghana in search of work in Accra.