The Minority Caucus in Ghana’s Parliament is piling up pressure on the Akufo Addo led government to immediately evacuate Ghanaians who are trapped in China, particularly Wuhan which is currently the hot bed of the deadly Corona Virus which has reportedly claimed over 1,000 lives worldwide.
The group has given the government a three-day ultimatum from Tuesday, February 11 to Thursday, February 13, 2020 to do the needful to bring back home Ghanaian nationals, particularly the stranded Ghanaian students in that country just as other countries worldwide including African countries are doing for their nationals.
They have presented a list of some African countries that have managed to evacuate their nationals in the mist of the crisis including Morocco, Egypt, Algeria, Mauritania, Kenya, Tunisia, Mauritius, Seychelles and Libya.
The Akufo Addo government is yet to give a clear indication of an evacuation plan for the Ghanaian nationals in that country and the state of preparedness of the country’s health system in the wake of the highly infectious disease which has been declared as a world health emergency.
The Ranking Member on the Foreign Affairs and the Health Committees of Parliament, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa and Kwabena Mintah Akandoh respectively, addressed a press interaction in Parliament on Tuesday, February 11, 2020 to press home their demands for an evacuation.
Addressing the media, the Ranking Member on the Committee on Foreign Affairs who is also the MP for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa indicated that the government is shirking its duty and being insensitive to the plight of the students who are currently living under vary precarious situations since their dormitories are being converted into emergency response centers.
“We are saying we cannot continue with this dereliction of duty, insensitive and callous approach to such a global health emergency.
“We have convened this press interaction to renew our demands on the Akufo Addo led government to immediately evacuate our nationals in Wuhan, particularly students who are stranded and continues to cry out for help and are currently under locked down in Wuhan.” He said.
According to him, Ghana has got more capacity, resources, and stability to evacuate its nationals from China as compared to the other African countries who have been able to mobilize to evacuate their nationals.
“Ghana has the capacity to evacuate. We did that nine years ago when the Libyan civil war erupted…We evacuated more than 16,000 Ghanaians who were caught up in that civil war. With the help of NADMO, the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, the International Organization for Migration.”
He argued that the number of Ghanaians stranded in Wuhan will not exceed 400 and that if government was really minded to bring them back it will take only one charted flight.
Okudzato Ablakwa also refuted allegations making rounds that it is dangerous to bring back the Ghanaians stranded in China because they may have contracted the disease and may precipitate its spread into the country.
He emphasized that no Ghanaian has so far been confirmed to have contracted the disease therefore indicated that the fear was unfounded.
“The fear that people are harboring that we in the Minority are being reckless by making this call and for asking that we should extend love and care and support to our nationals. We are not being reckless at all. It is those who are refusing to take action who are rather being reckless.”
Adding that, “We are also saying that the timeous intervention is very necessary. At this point that there is no confirmed case, this is the time to evacuate. Things will become more risky if we wait for there to be confirmed cases before we move in to evacuate.”
Source: Clement Akoloh||africanewsradio.com