Govt eases social gathering restrictions with a strict protocol and sanction applied if one fails…
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has rolled out new directives on public gatherings to ease the negative impact of the restrictions on the economy to return lives to normality.
Under the new directives, church services and Muslim prayers could take place with 100 congregants at a time and for only an hour.
The directives take effect on Friday June 5 to enable Muslims and Christians worship God to pray for the nation.
Conferences, weddings, burials, non-contact sport and political activities with a limited number of 100 participants was allowed to take place.
Restaurant is allowed to operate with not more than 100 customers with a strict adherence to social distancing protocol.
Addressing the nation on measures taken by the government to help combat the deadly respiratory ailment on Sunday in Accra, President Akufo-Addo noted that the road map to strategically easing the restrictions ensued from engagements with various stakeholders to drive the economy through the pandemic.
“I know, at firsthand, the devastating impact the measures employed to defeat the virus has had on our social, religious, cultural and economic lives, as well as on our jobs, and the education of our children, and yet, because of love of country, we have borne with them.
I know, however, that we cannot live with these restrictions forever, and that it is imperative we find a safe way to return our lives to normality, as other nations across the globe are trying to do,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo explained that church and mosques would operate with a mandatory one metre rule of social distancing between congregants.
In addition to the mandatory wearing of masks for all persons at all times in churches and mosques, he insisted that authorities of the religious institutions should disinfect and fumigate the premises while they register the names and contact details of all worshippers and adequately provide them with visible hand washing facilities and sanitising stands to maintain and improve personal hygiene of congregants.
“Whilst we step up public education of the protocols on public gatherings, let me also state that regulatory agencies will undertake random checks to ensure conformity with these rules, and the security services will be tasked to enforce them. Should any institution fail to adhere to these directives, its activity will be immediately prohibited, and relevant sanctions applied,” the President added.
Nana Akufo-Addo stated that festivals, sporting events, nightclubs, cinemas and political rallies remain banned for the time being.
He was quick to add that the government would make adjustments to its decisions when the need arise and urged those affected to continue to cooperate with the government to speed up measures in easing those restrictions.
The President stressed that plans were far advanced to evacuate Ghanaians stranded abroad.
He said they would be tested and quarantined before being allowed to reunite with their families.
Nana Akufo-Addo promised his outfit’s support to health practitioners and Ghanaians to ensure they do not get swayed by the current pandemic, adding that “this to shall pass.”
Meanwhile, the country’s borders remain closed indefinitely to human traffic while schools would be opened for final year students to prepare them for their exit examinations.
Ghana has so far recorded 8,070 confirmed positive cases with 36 deaths and 2,947 recoveries while 13 are severely ill with three critically-ill for which one is on a ventilator.
5,087 persons responding to treatment at home, isolation centres and hospitals.
BY JOYCELINE NATALLY CUDJOE