Parents of Ghanaian students in China’s Wuhan Province say they are ready to pay half of airfares for the evacuation of their children who are currently stranded in the region as the Coronavirus outbreak intensifies.
This is according to a spokesperson for the parents, Daniel Nii Lartey.
“I have been in touch with the parents here in Ghana, and they are saying that even if the government cannot pay for the full flight for our children, we are willing to pay half of the amount for the flight. This is because they want their children to come so much that it is not about the money anymore,” he said.
Following the outbreak of the Coronavirus, there have been calls from the Minority, the China chapter of National Union of Ghana Students (NUGS) and parents to evacuate Ghanaian students from the country but the Public Health Director of the Ghana Health Service, Dr. Badu Sarkodie and the Acting Director-General of the Ghana Health Service, Dr Patrick Kumah Aboagye, have said after careful deliberation of the status of Ghanaian students in Wuhan, evacuating them is not an option for now.
“I think what is being monitored– their livelihood, their psychological being, their wellbeing… I think it is good enough they stay there…When they come back, how will they go back? Will the China government take them back? These are factors that are being taken into consideration. It is in their best interest and the best interest of the Ghanaian population [for them to stay there],” Public Health Director of the Ghana Health Service, Dr. Badu Sarkodie said.
Minority gives gov’t 3-day ultimatum
The Minority Caucus in Parliament on Tuesday gave Government a three-day ultimatum to evacuate Ghanaians living in China in the midst of the ravaging coronavirus.
The caucus said it is unfathomable that President Akufo-Addo has remained quiet on the matter since the outbreak while his administration seems unmoved by the distress calls of particularly Ghanaian students in China.
The Caucus says it is equally minded by the available WHO protocols on evacuations and will insist those protocols are followed in the evacuation process.
WHO hasn’t recommended evacuation of Ghanaian students yet – Health Ministry
The Ministry of Health this week said that consultations and engagements with the World Health Organization (WHO) and other regional bodies do not encourage the evacuation of Ghanaian nationals from China.
In a statement, the Ministry said the government is liaising with the Embassy in China to ensure that all citizens continue to remain safe as no Ghanaian student has been reported to have contracted the virus.
“We are working in collaboration with the World Health Organisation, West African Health Organisation, US Centres for Disease Control and other Development Partners, discussing and reviewing our strategies day by day. So far, all advice through consultations and engagements is not encouraging us to undertake mass evacuation because sub-regional consultation- the West African Health Organisation is engaging member states and has not recommended evacuation yet.”