The government of Ghana has suddenly failed under the pretext of lip-service approach in the fight of the novel coronavirus pandemic where the precious lives of our young girls and boys are being mischievously traded with politics.
The ‘robot and go-it-alone style” has symbolized our weakness to confront the covid-19 crisis, of which we have reflected our focus as a nation on politics instead of facilitating measures to curb the situation. We cannot solemnly invest the sovereignty of the country into political bigotry. In a seeming attempt to deflect from our own widely criticized handling of the pandemic…which has led to the death of over 139 Ghanaians to date, policy-makers especially health experts and civil societies including well-meaning Ghanaians have a duty to play in the fight of the pandemic. The gradually wide spread of the virus in the Senior High Schools are concerns that need a holistic approach by all stakeholders.
If the lack of robust leadership in the fight of covid-19 is missing, we will severely pay the price. For that core reason, the government’s response to the covid-19 should be indeed thoroughly canvas for sufficient policy plans to facilitate the safety of our children in school. If not, we will not only fail to stand up for vigorous core strategic road-map to end the spread of the virus, we will rather actualize grounds to increase it spread.
We cannot pretend to adopt the adamance lifestyle and say all is well. The Health Ministry, the Education Ministry and the covid-19 team even though their best have been exhibited, we further encourage them not to put off their candles to continue ensuring that the novel coronavirus does not rest on our lives..
We reiterate the government not to allow politics to gain grounds in the health community even though it has been an undeniable fact that politics are not playing a key role in the fight of the covid-19. The entrenched position of government officials to facilitate their parochial interest is a recipe to put the lives of students in danger. ’We cannot wait to hit by the face with increasing death tolls in our schools before taking actions’’. We therefore appealed to the president to consider the vast spread of the virus in the schools and do the blissful thing and closed down the school amidst cancelling the WASSCE and BECE.
Despite the several calls from civil organizations, political parties, the parent-teacher association, Damak Sanitation Watch and Health also conceived the same idea for the reason being that, the virus is gradually catching up with students in the schools and thought over it closer and cancellation. Our information has it that the Ministry of Education however, claimed that experts’ advice indicates that enough facilities have been provided to mitigate the spread of the virus in our schools. Thus, there is no course for alarm.
However, such self-centered expert analysis has failed to arrest the situation. Barely a month since the schools reopened, close to 14 Senior High Schools are said to have been affected with the virus and out of the 14 schools, over 130 students tested covid-19 positive. That notwithstanding, another student from Gwirama Senior High School in the Western Region , Nathaniel Yankey lost his life believed to be the Covid-19.
This reveals that the signs don’t look good and the lives of our wards matters most to us. Our concerns as parents and the position of the government are unparalleled and there is no clear cut solution to address the problem in the affected schools. If the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Education, the Cocoa board, and the Ministry of Health are said to have been closed down due to the outbreak of the covid-19 pandemic, what are our children still doing in the schools?
These are key legitimate questions that many parents continue asking; The president of the land has gone into self-isolation, the Education Minister, is self-quarantined, the Health Minister is self-quarantined at the time whose presence matters most. The safety of students and the entire country are sitting on tentacles.
We want to find out whether the education experts thought of students who tested positive how they will participate in writing the exams? And even if their conditions permit them to do so, under what circumstances will their exams papers be marked. All these are pertinent questions that need answers considering their health stigma.
If we are to consider the discrete response of the Director of Election at the EC who was answering some questions in one of the radio stations, stated equivocally that people who tested positive are considered to be people who are sick and would not have time to think of registration. And if this is applicable in that context, it means that same statement applies in the students’ case. Hence the government should not offer the lives of our children for a political game and do the needful thing where it’s applicable.
The Chief Executive Officer
Damak Sanitation Watch & Health
(Mr. Akgri Mbabugri Daniel)