The National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) in the Builsa North District of the Upper East Region has taken education on COVID-19 to clients at the Out-Patient Department and Reproductive Child Health Unit of the Sandema District hospital.
The move, in collaboration with various stakeholders, was part of the Commission’s continuous sensitization of identifiable groups on issues related to the Accountability, Rule of law, and Anti- Corruption Programme (ARAP).
The sensitization programme which was under the theme: “Environmental Governance and COVID-19,” was the third phase of public education campaign undertaken in all 260 administrative Districts in Ghana in July this year, with support from the European Union (EU).
Speaking to clients at the RCH of the hospital, Mr Jeffery Adda, the Builsa North District Director of the NCCE, said the sensitization was intended to educate and encourage them to adopt good environmental governance practices which were critical in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
He said the aim of the exercise was also to empower them as citizens to demand greater public accountability from duty bearers in the management of the environment in the fight against the virus.
Mr Adda said the ARAP was a joint anti-corruption initiative between the Government of Ghana (GoG) and the EU which integrated the National Anti- Corruption Action Plan (NACAP) in its design.
Some of the topics the Director and officials from the Ghana Health Service and the District Environmental Office engaged clients on included “Maintenance of Good Environmental Governance practices in combatting COVID-19 pandemic.”
Other topics were “Appropriate disposal of Personal Protective Equipment such as nose masks, hand gloves, medical overalls, and tissue papers, to help contain the spread of COVID-19,” “Child safety and advice to stay away from playing with used PPE” among others.
Mr Adda said COVID-19 infection was no respecter of persons and urged clients at the two units of the hospital to show love to recovered COVID-19 victims devoid of stigmatization, “Once a patient has recovered, the person does not pose a danger to society anymore so when we despise recovered victims, we can’t fight the virus.”
On his part, Mr Issah Issahaku, the Builsa District Deputy Environmental Officer advised clients to always dispose of nose masks, saying used masks should be disposed off in dust bins with lids, burnt or buried in the ground to prevent possible contamination of members of the public, especially children who may play with them.
Mr John Ayamga, a Nutrition Officer at the Builsa North District Health Directorate emphasized the need for breastfeeding mothers at the RCH unit to strictly follow the COVID-19 protocols.
He observed that relatives and friends in the District often ignored the protocols, especially the use of nose masks when they were together, “You don’t have to relax on the protocols when you are with family members or your friends because you don’t know where your relative or friend may have gone and may contract the virus. Always keep safe.”
Mr Ayamga said diet played a critical role in the fight against COVID-19 and advised the clients to eat well-balanced diets so that in case they got infected, their bodies could suppress the multiplication of the virus.
“Eat well, but eating well is not eating goat head or chicken thighs, the leafy vegetables and fruits we have around, the ‘dawadawa’ and ‘keta school boys’ are all good sources of nutrients to help our bodies fight the virus,” he said.