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All passengers onboard vehicles that passed through the Inchaban Police Barrier in the Shama District into the Sekondi-Takoradi Metropolis in the Western Region on Sunday were made to undergo mandatory screening.
The screening exercise under the behest of the Sekondi-Takoradi Metropolitan Assembly (STMA) is to ensure that no person enters into the metropolis with any coronavirus case.
As parts of Ashanti and Greater Accra regions prepare for a partial lockdown, there are fears that people will move into other regions for respite.
In a bid to ensure that Sekondi-Takoradi will not become a victim of any imported case due to the influx from locked-down regions, personnel from the Metro Health Directorate were stationed at the Inchaban Barrier to take the temperature of persons on board vehicles coming into the metropolis.
When the 3news.com got to the barrier, over ten officials from the Metro Health Directorate were stationed there and working fastidiously on passengers crossing the barrier.
With their Infrared thermometer gun, the personnel moved from one vehicle to the other taking the temperature of people on board.
While doing that they took the opportunity to educate the passengers on the safety protocols proffered by health experts in the wake of the pandemic.
Some of the passengers applauded city authorities for the foresight and said the measure is reassuring.
“This screening is too late but it is better than nothing. At least we will be assured that measures are in place to ensure that no case slips into the region,” a passenger, Michael Ainoo, said.
But there were some who were not pleased with the long tailback caused by the screening.
“I’m coming from Accra. When we got here, I was happy to see the screening. Unfortunately, I was thinking that after my temperature was taken and all seemed normal, I will be given some masks and gloves but that was not the case. I think it is not proper,” James Annan said after he was screened.
Sekondi-Takoradi Metro Health Director Dr. Kofi Sutherland assured that the screening exercise is to ensure that any suspected case is swiftly dealt with to prevent the metro from recording any coronavirus case.
“We anticipate people might migrate from Accra to this place. So, what we are doing is to check their temperature as a method of surveillance. So far, we’ve had four people with temperature between 38 and one had 40. And we’ve taken their numbers and those who are planning to move on to other places have been advised to stay.”
Sekondi-Takoradi Mayor Anthony KK Sam, who visited the barrier to ascertain the level of compliance, told 3news.com that the exercise will continue until they receive another instruction from central government.
“Sekondi-Takoradi is a very peculiar area. We have people coming from the sea, by air and the harbour is also here. We have people coming from Abidjan and the rest. We have people coming from the mine and don’t forget the oil industry. So, we are in the center and we cannot allow ourselves to go to sleep.
“We have another checkpoint mounted by the region at the tollbooth. But after the tollbooth, we have areas from Daboase, Shama, Aboadze, Beposo entering the mainstream to Takoradi. So, if we allow them to come here unchecked before we say Jack then there is a problem. That is why we are undertaking this screening exercise.”
By Eric Yaw Adjei|3news.com|Ghana