The Upper East Regional (UER) Secretariat of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) is appealing to government to equip the Bolgatanga Regional hospital and the Navrongo research centre to enable them test potential COVID-19 cases.
According to the NDC, the situation where all suspected cases of COVID -19 are sent to Kumasi or Accra for testing may compromise test results and put undue pressure on those facilities.
The party also want government to ensure regular patrols of porous borders and provide the necessary personal protective equipment at the region’s borders to enhance screening and safety of frontline workers.
Speaking at a press conference in Zuarungu, NDC Regional Communication Officer, Saeed Ahmed Tijani said, government should constitute an emergency response team to patrol the region’s borders and provide sufficient logistics requisite to avert the spread of the virus into the region.
“We want government to equip the laboratories of the Bolgatanga Regional Hospital and the Navrongo Research Centre to enable them to test potential COVID-19 cases promptly. Currently, all suspected cases are sent to Kumasi or Accra. This is not enough because time is of essence, and such a process may compromise the accuracy and integrity of test results. Government should constitute a joint military, immigration and police team and equip them to regularly patrol Ghana’s land borders with Burkina Faso and Togo. They should provide all necessary personal protective equipment (PPEs) at all the four approved borders thus Paga, Namoo, Kulunkungu, Pulmakom and Mognori to enhance effective screening and safety of our health workers”.
Mr. Tijani further made a clarion call on government through the various Municipal and District Assemblies to sensitize the citizenry in their local dialects on COVID-19 and measures they should adopt to prevent its spread.
“Government should put up an emergency response team in the region and resource them with the required tools and logistics to deliver. They should provide adequate logistics (money, vehicles etc.) to the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO) and the Information Service Department to embark on mass public sensitization and awareness creation on the COVID-19 pandemic. This sensitization awareness must be done in the local dialects in the region”.
“President Nana Akufo-Addo recently announced the closure of all borders to ensure that, COVID-19 is not imported into the country and also to better manage recorded cases but the porous nature of Ghana’s borders particularly in the Upper East Region leave citizens in the balance as to how prepared and resourced the security agencies are to police these unapproved borders both day and night.”
Ghana currently has 132 confirmed cases of COVID-19 with 3 deaths in the Ashanti and Greater Accra Regions.