COVID19-PRESERVING DEMOCRACY-THE HEALTH OF THE NATION: what are our priorities? Part 1
On 12th March 2020, the first two cases of covid19 were recorded in Ghana from two individuals who returned from Norway and Turkey. Since then, the global pandemic has gained notoriety in Ghana and is making its paths deeper into even the 3 regions which hitherto for over two months had not recorded a single case. As a nation we can count in excess of 19,000 confirmed cases at the moment which is quite troubling. On 12th March Ghana had recorded 2 cases, 556 on 12th of April, 5,127 on 12th of May, 10, 856 on 12th of June and by this data, in excess of an estimated 25,000 cases by the 12th of July is projected, should the trend continues. Let’s hold on to the loss of human lives for now.
What are our priorities as a nation? Are we conscious of the realities? Are we managing this disease well enough?
Will we say recovery rates are impressive? Yes very, but have we thought about those who might have been exposed to these individuals before they showed symptoms? Could the numbers go up if we do not continue with the attitude we exhibited when we first learnt about the disease? Are we very safe when Greater Accra, the capital of Ghana has less than 5,000 bed capacity? And what happens should recovery rates not continue to save the situation as has been the case? With a backlog of tests yet to be released and the fact that suspected individuals are discharged to go home and to self-isolate after a few days, are we possibly causing more harm than good? Why have we as a nation waited to complain about shortages of test kits when we know from the global trend that we needed to expect such hikes?
Are the agencies helping the President of the land enough to do his work effectively after he consistently reiterated the fact that he will not put Ghanaian lives in danger?
Knowing very well that the habit of distancing socially is a challenge as a nation because of our cultural orientation- eg in our markets, shops, schools, religious gatherings, other social gatherings & events etc, does it not become a national headache when people fail to heed to the advice on social distancing protocols at registration centres?
How do we change this habit as a people? Should agencies and institutions be allowed to downplay their roles to offer the opportunity for certain individuals and organizations to score political points out of a deep-rooted national canker? Once again are some individuals and agencies making the the government and the EC look as if they are not working enough? Who enforces law of social distancing at registration centres? Are we saving our democracy at the expense of our health?
Why have the nation Ghana which was rated amongst the best managers of the pandemic suddenly cut down tests at a time when the case counts are escalating and is nearing a 20,000 mark?
Should the President of the land His Excellency Nana Akufo-Addo call some specific individuals, agencies and institutions to order before the nation falls sick? Can we be excited with the high recovery rates only, and yet ignore a surge in the death rates (117 deaths as at the time of writing) coupled with lesser numbers of testing as a whole? Have the interests and focus of the nation changed? In case we are pursuing the two agenda, are we placing priority on democracy over the nation’s health?
As we deploy our military to prevent intruders from neighboring countries who could be carriers of the disease, can we consider deploying enough police to enforce the president’s directives at the registration centres to save the citizens from getting possible infection from unsuspecting individuals? Do we need to change our attitude as a people so as to make this voter registration exercise a success or we allow the naysayers to celebrate at the end of the day? Can we sanitize the entire voter registration exercise?
What are our priorities?