Food vendors in Tema, one of Ghana’s locked down cities for the coronavirus infections, are heaving a sigh of relief after misinformation about the ongoing lockdown which prevented them from selling was cured.
In response to what they themselves have been calling a cure from ignorance, the vendors have been opening eateries, joints and ‘chop bars’ again amidst praises to President Akufo-Addo and the Tema Metropolitan Chief Executive, Felix Mensah Nii Anang-La for correcting the misinformation.
“I want to thank the father of our nation, President Akufo-Addo for the wisdom and leadership he has been showing through this coronavirus crisis.
I thank him that he has exempted us food vendors from the lockdown and because of that we can serve our clients.
“I also want to specially thank our father here in Tema, Felix Mensah Nii Anang-La, the MCE for quickly coming out to dispel an earlier misinformation that those who are affected by the stay home order included we food vendors. If he had not done that, we will still be home,” said Charlotte Efua Gordon, an eatery operator in Tema.
According to her, if both the Presidency and the Tema MCE had not come out to correct misinformation that the stay at home order did not apply to food vendors, “we would just ignorantly stay home and starve our customers in these times when they need us the most”
Madam Efua Gordon’s sentiment and gratitude was shared by a number of the first batch of food vendors who opened shop again following the clearance of the misinformation.
Mrs. Molley Koletey, said she was sure she had heard President Akufo-Addo exempt food vendors from the lockdown in the nationwide broadcast that had announced it.
“However, when a public announcement vehicle came round to repeat what the President had said for us in Twi, they claimed that even we the food vendors too were included. So we stayed at home on the first day, and many of our colleagues are still at home.”
She said however that some of her customers who patronised her banku and tilapia meal on regular basis later called her and informed her that the MCE had corrected the misinformation. “The MCE actually said we the food vendors are critically needed at this time more than ever before!”
On her part, tea and bread seller, Rose Mensah, said she was planning on taking a long break when word came to her that her services were needed because people would need to eat.
“I want to thank President Akufo-Addo and Anang-La, our MCE, for making us feel useful and important. I have been selling for years and not once have I really ever felt so needed by my country until now,” Madam Mensah said.
The vendors praised the President and the MCE and vowed to contribute the best they could to the battle to defeat the deadly coronavirus pandemic which claimed five lives in the country.
As first step, all the vendors have been consciously applying all the necessary protocols, including: social distancing, to ensure their clients are safe. They have also mounted veronica buckets and made available sanitizers for customers’ hygiene.