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Covid-19: Health experts condemn how food is distributed to Ghanaians in lockdown areas

By Justice Kofi Bimpeh
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Some health experts have condemned the manner in which government and private groups are distributing food to some Ghanaians in the Covid-19 lockdown areas.

President Akufo-Addo disclosed that the government has begun the distribution of free meals to over 400,000 Ghanaians in locked-down areas amidst the COVID-19 outbreak in Ghana.

In his address, Nana Akufo-Addo that admitted the hardship the situation has brought on the majority of Ghanaians adding that there was however the need for the provision of “food packages and hot meals” to enable poor households to minimise their vulnerability.

“We are in difficult times, and that is why I directed the Minister for Finance to send to Parliament the Coronavirus Alleviation Programme (CAP), whose objective is to protect households and livelihoods, support micro, small, and medium-sized businesses, minimize job losses, and source additional funding for promotion of industries to shore up and expand industrial output for domestic consumption and exports.”

READ ALSO : Covid-19 lockdown : Asiedu Nketia questions govt's plan to feed over 400,000 Ghanaians 

 He added that “through this Programme, the Ministries of Gender, Children and Social Protection and Local Government and Rural Development, and the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO), working with MMDCEs and the faith-based organizations, have begun to provide food for up to four hundred thousand (400,000) individuals and homes in the affected areas of the restrictions. This begun in Accra and will begin in Kumasi the next day. It will come in the form of dry food packages and hot meals and will be delivered to vulnerable communities in Accra, Tema, Kumasi and Kasoa.”

This effort has also been supported by some private groups but many have questioned the distribution process of the food to the people.

During the distribution, many are seen massed up at the venue without adhering to the social distancing protocol.

Presidential advisor on Health, Dr Anthony Nsiah Asare and Epidemiologist, Dr. John Amuasi expressed their worry over situation arguing that this may defeat the purpose of the partial lockdown if care is not taken.

Dr Justice Yankson of the Ghana Medical Association who is also part of a private group helping in this regard of feeding the needy said they have put on hold their activities due to the challenge of the people not adhering to the social distancing protocol.

He noted that they will continue with the activity when they find a suitable way of dealing with the crowd.

Presidential advisor on Health, Dr Anthony Nsiah Asare said the government has also taken notice of the situation and will address it.