The President, Nana Akufo-Addo has said Ghanaians cannot allow the novel COVID-19 to determine the nation’s survival and progress.
“We have to do everything within our power to protect their potential, and, thereby, help preserve our future. We cannot afford to let the pandemic undermine our chances for survival and progress. We have to confront our present and future with confidence, knowing fully well that we must remain, at all times, vigilant and careful,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo made the remark in response to concerns over the reopening of schools in the wake of a spike in COVID-19 cases.
Some Ghanaians have called out the President for announcing the opening of schools for final year students amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
Universities are reopening today, Monday while senior high and junior high schools will follow suit in the coming days.
As of Sunday, June 14, 2020, the COVID-19 cases in Ghana had increased to 11,964.
While addressing the nation on Sunday, President Akufo-Addo explained that there was the need to ease restrictions to help revitalize the Ghanaian economy.
“Fellow Ghanaians, over the last three (3) months, every aspect of our national life has been affected by this virus. We have had to take deliberate steps to ensure that our society, in the face of the pandemic, is able to function, and continues to strive to deliver the results of progress, prosperity, and development, for which we all yearn. Saving lives, jobs and livelihoods, revitalising our economy, and safeguarding the future of our country have been at the heart of this endeavour. We cannot say that, because of the pandemic, we are no longer interested in issues of social justice, such as education and health.”
Akufo-Addo also explained that government has put in place the necessary measures to protect students returning to school.
“Education, indeed, is the key to the future of our country. The quality of education that our educational institutions produce, ultimately, will determine the success or otherwise of our nation. We, therefore, have to find a way of guaranteeing the prospects of the generation of young people who are the objects of education today, and who represent our future.”
Universities ready to reopen after over three-month shutdown
Public and Private Universities across the country say they are ready to resume academic work as final year students return to school today, Monday.
Chairman of Vice-Chancellors Ghana, Professor Ebenezer Oduro says adequate measures have been put in place to protect students, teaching and non-teaching staff.
“All universities are obliging to reopen and so come the 15th, Monday, all universities will reopen so students who want to come to campus are free to come to campus. Those who for one reason or the other feel that they are safe where they are and they have access to internet facilities and they will want to stay at home while we continue our online things,” he said.
‘COVID-19 numbers do not support partial reopening of schools’ – Prof Azar
Meanwhile, Legal Practitioner and Professor of Accounting, Stephen Kweku Asare, also known as Kwaku Azar has called on the government to reconsider its decision to partially reopen schools.
Professor Azar in a Facebook post said the COVID-19 numbers do not support the idea, thus asked the government to call off the reopening of the schools.
“The COVID-19 numbers do not support a partial reopening of schools on Monday. The government should look at the numbers and refine the reopening policy accordingly”.