Covid & Ghana’s electioneering

Ghana needs patriotic, visionary and law-abiding leaders whose followers are no different and have a positive attitude towards the country’s transformation.

But is this what would be experienced after the December 7 polls in the wake of the Covid-19 restrictions and safety protocols?

Ghana recorded its first two cases of Covid-19 in March after which measures were put in place by government to curb the spread of the infection.

They included the bans on school activities, all public gatherings including conferences, workshops, funerals, festivals, political rallies, church activities and other related events to reduce the spread of the virus.

All of the country’s borders were also closed and have since been subsequently reviewed multiple times.

On Monday, March 30, a partial lockdown of Accra and Kumasi took effect.

By the end of the March, there had been 152 confirmed cases, 5 deaths, and 22 recovered patients, leaving 125 active cases going into April.

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has in live broadcasts updated Ghanaians on the pandemic, insisting on the observance of the safety protocols of social distancing; frequent handwashing with soap, the use of hand sanitisers and the wearing of facemasks

Wearing of face masks was made mandatory to be enforced by businesses and organizations and later, after an executive instrument, its non-observance became punishable by law.

But with time the observance of the safety protocols has waned.

It is even more surprising how political actors refuse to adhere to simple instructions for which some ordinary citizens were jailed.

Covid-19 protocols are being flouted during political party rallies and campaigns organised by various political parties.

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Many of the candidates, party supporters and sympathizers do not observe the social distancing let alone wear the face masks or shields during the campaigns; a simple case of lawlessness.

Health authorities are warning of a second wave of the pandemic just as in countries in Europe.

Couldn’t political parties adopt innovative campaigning methods as part of efforts to prevent a second wave of the pandemic?

Their activities have indeed become vectors for the coronavirus spread.

These activities have resulted a widescale lukewarm public posture and a total disregard to the safety protocols.

Many Ghanaians have thus reverted to lifestyles prior to the pandemic, a danger that could derail the successes chalked in the fight against the pandemic.

The country  as at Sunday, November 1 has recorded 48,124 cases of which 69 are new, 589 active cases, 47,215 recoveries/discharge and 320 deaths.

What has affected the political will to remain focused on the strict adherence of the protocols?

We pause for answers.

By Solomon Wiredu

The writer is a journalist with Media General