President Akufo-Addo says the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) negative test that all person seeking to travel to Ghana have to obtain three days before their trip to country, will remain inspite of calls to increase the timelines for the test to five (5) days.
The President made this known in his eighteenth (18th) address to the Nation since the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, in Ghana in March 2020.
“Fellow Ghanaians, we all know that the emergence of the virus on our shores came from abroad, necessitating the closure of our borders, by land, air and sea, in March 2020. Following the provision of testing facilities, which ensure the speed and accuracy of COVID-19 testing, Kotoka International Airport was reopened on 1st September 2020. It has been six (6) weeks since the reopening, and a total of thirty thousand, five hundred and sixty-four (30,564) passengers have been tested, from which ninety-two (92) have tested positive” President Akufo-Addo said.
Providing further details, the President indicated that “all ninety-two (92) are asymptomatic cases, whose status, but for the test, would not have been detected, and would have spread the disease amongst the rest of the population”.
“I am aware that some are calling for Government to extend the PCR negative test period before boarding the flight from three (3) days to at least five (5) days. I believe, in the context of the second wave of infections that is engulfing so many countries of Europe and America, that we have to insist on the three (3) day period. It is better to be safe than sorry” President Akufo-Addo noted.
On the economic front, President Akufo-Addo indicated that according to the Bank of Ghana, “the Ghanaian economy is recovering faster than initially anticipated. Consumer confidence, he said, “is bouncing back strongly, and is today above pre-lockdown levels”.
Business confidence has also increased, reflecting the improving macroeconomic conditions, stability in the exchange rate, lower input prices, moderation in lending rates, and positive industry prospects. Consumer spending, industrial consumption of electricity, and construction activities have all reached pre-lockdown levels, whilst tourist arrivals and port harbour activity are gradually edging upwards” the President posited.
*OBSERVATION OF COVID-19 PROTOCOLS*
The President observed that in spite of his government’s and the Nation’s success in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, the virus remains something of a mystery, and we should always rather err on the side of caution, and continue to observe the protocols that have brought us to where we are.
“So, I urge all of you, my fellow Ghanaians, to continue to comply with the strict hygiene, mask wearing and social distancing protocols that have become part of our daily routines. This is the surest way by which we can defeat the virus, and avoid a second wave of infections” the President said.
“The outlook on our battle against COVID-19 remains optimistic, for which we thank God and you, the Ghanaian people. It is important that we maintain this positive position, especially with a few weeks to the holding of the December 7 presidential and parliamentary elections” President Akufo-Addo added.
As at today, Sunday 18th October 2020, the number of active cases stands at three hundred and ninety-eight (398), with forty-six thousand, six hundred and sixty-four (46,664) persons fully recovered from the virus, putting our recovery rate at 98.5%. The total number of deaths, tragically, stands at three hundred and ten (310), out of a total number of five hundred and ten thousand, and seventy-four (510,074) persons tested. The rate of death, 0.5%, continues to remain very low.