By Steve Awuyah Addae (Villageboy)
Last night our President issued a directive on the Corona virus pandemic. While I appreciate our president’s swift response, I find a number of his directive to be vague and confusing. For example:
1. What is “public gathering”?
Does an assembly of individuals to carry out a wedding ceremony or engagement in their private homestead constitute a public gathering, which the president’s directive proscribes? Does a funeral that has been planned for months which comes off, for example, next weekend, in a private ceremony and private graveyard constitute a public gathering? What about a church in a private auditorium?
The president provides exemption to supermarkets, restaurants, night-clubs and bars, and cautioned owners, to observe hygiene procedures. What makes a night-club less susceptible to the Corona virus than a church or a funeral to which the former gets a pass under this declaration?
I suppose If people can go to night-clubs and use hand sanitizers and social distancing, they can as well also sit in church in a social distance with their hands sanitized.
For the avoidance of doubt, the president’s declarative should state more clearly the public gathering doctrine to prevent any unlawful assembly or an Illegal gathering because of the confusion.
2. The president’s directive did not mention any economic package to folks who may be laid off temporarily because of this order.
3. The president’s order did not highlight if government would cover the cost of testing and treatment for individuals who do not have medical insurance.
4. The president’s directive did not fashion out the supply of logistics and tools for our health practitioners and incentives to keep them at work.
5. Would the president by this sudden calamity of Corona, commit to building a research and testing center other than Nogouchi Memorial Institute and the Kumasi Center for Collaborative research in Tropical Medicine? How about bed capacity in the phase of mass hospitalization?
6. Lastly, Mr. President assuming somebody lives in Yendi and experiences the symptoms of Corona virus, is he/she to travel down to kumasi or Accra to get tested? Will our regional hospitals be equiped to test patients, Mr. President Akufo-Addo?
Steve awuyah Addae