President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has announced the shutdown of all schools, both public and private, in Ghana in the face of the spread of the deadly coronavirus disease.
The decision was taken after he chaired an inter-ministerial committee meeting on the pandemic on Sunday, March 15.
President Akufo-Addo announced this in a live nationwide broadcast.
All schools including universities and primaries must not open from Monday, March 16, according to the president.
“The Ministry of Education in collaboration with the Ministry of Communications has been tasked to roll out distance learning programmes,” President Akufo-Addo said.
Candidates for the upcoming Basic Education Certificate Examinations (BECE) and West Africa Senior Schools Certificate Examinations (WASSCE) will, however, be allowed to attend school to prepare but with prescribed social distancing rules.
President Akufo-Addo also announced a ban on all social gathering including church services, funerals, political rallies and sporting activities for the next four weeks.
But gatherings of not more than 25 persons may be permitted.
Shopping malls, markets, night clubs among other suchlike establishments are to observe enhanced hygiene procedures by providing, for instance, hand sanitisers and soap with running water.
Workers will also continue to go to work but “should observe prescribed social distancing between patrons and staff”.
In order to make these measures binding, President Akufo-Addo has tasked the Attorney General to submit to Parliament immediately an emergency legislation in accordance with Article 21 of the Constitution.
He has also directed the Minister of Health to exercise his powers under Section 169 of the Public Health Act, 2012 (Act 851) to get an Executive Instrument to govern the measures.
“I call upon Parliament to support the Executive in this national endeavour.”
These measures come in the wake of the confirmation of six cases of Covid-19 in Ghana.
“All measures that have been announced will be subject to review and enhancement, if necessary.”
By Emmanuel Kwame Amoh|3news.com|Ghana