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01.04.2020 Feature Article

JymWrites: The New COVID-19 Proves That Ghana Has Always Been In Crises

JymWrites: The New COVID-19 Proves That Ghana Has Always Been In Crises
LISTEN APR 1, 2020

It is no secret that the novel coronavirus has left the world in a state of emergency. It may also be known that some countries, like Ghana, will be buried deeper should this pandemic persist.

You would have noticed through my articles that I do not shy away when it comes to addressing issues on poor governance, I have been clear on the fact that we are going to fail our beloved country should we allow our politicians to continue to win us over with their cheap politics. The picture of where the country stands and the pit we are heading into is clear if you see things with no compromise or without trying to pick sides.

Since the first two cases of the virus were confirmed on the 12th of March 2020, our leaders to my expectation has not done enough to assure the citizenry that the country is capable of facing this off. I think we have been lenient with our approaches and the president’s directives were not thorough enough in facing this pandemic head-on.

Foremost, the country has never been ready for emergencies or crises such as this. We have been busy playing politics instead of planning the success of the country. Before the arrival of the batch of medical supplies donated by Jack Ma Foundation, frontline health workers and hospitals battling the virus complained about the shortage of medical supplies to help their work. Could it be that the government had no idea how they were going to address the issues concerning the shortage of medical supplies? And looking at the number of cases recorded and the shortage of medical supplies seems awkward to me. A shortage as earlier as this shouldn’t have been possible if we as a country see into the future and plan towards it. If not for the good gesture of Jack Ma through his foundation, where would we be standing as a country?

A report surfacing again indicates that there would be a possible lockdown as a measure to contain the pandemic. A lockdown may seem like a good measure on paper but in reality, we are putting the lives of the less fortunate in danger. Imagine the father of three who works from hand to mouth, the entire family is under threat of starving to death. I’m in support of a lockdown if that’s what it will take to push this virus back, but not when leadership neglect their responsibilities of properly managing the country. The poor always ends up paying for all leadership errors.

After the president issued that all educational institutions should close down, my university wants to convert our regular classes to online sections. That is smart thinking just that it comes with loopholes. Our internet infrastructure brings a limitation to this arrangement, a percentage of students live in remote areas where they may have issues accessing the internet. The issues of the less privileged also come to play; a parent who works from hand to mouth is now staying home, he needs to feed the family and now finds a way to buy data for his university daughter so that she can be able to take classes online.

Suggestion
I hope our leaders learn from this and focus more on managing the affairs of the country to an acceptable level rather than fighting each other. We should focus more on investing in practical education and science education should be one of the things we put resources into so that we can have graduates who are well equipped to produce medical kits instead of always relying on foreign help. It is sad to note that the total number of oxygen machines in Ghana is only 67 and it is one of the things we need to treat corona patients.

With the lockdown, we made the mistake India made. Announcing that there would be a lockdown only breeds panic and force people into panic travelling. The lockdown should have been declared with immediate effect or with a ban on travelling. The main reason for the lockdown is to contain the virus, how would that work if we allow people from affected areas to travel to areas that are not affected. It seems we are handling the issue with one eye closed and if we are not careful, we will put the entire country into trouble and the sad part is we don’t even have a quarter of the infrastructure Italy or the USA have.

I believe after this we will start building a country that is poised for electronic learning, consciously build an education system that can easily migrate to online when the need arises. Our problem is that we have no plans, our governments when they are in power only have a plan for the next four years and that plan does not include the country.

When we pray to God about COVID-19, we should remember to add that our leaders should note the mistakes and take the necessary steps needed to position this country well enough to at least stand the minor threats.

#StayHome #StaySafe

Joseph Yaw Mawunyo
Joseph Yaw Mawunyo, © 2020

Joseph Yaw Mawunyo is a graduate of the University of Education where he studied ICT. He currently works as a content creator and marketer and a freelance blogger. Contact him https://linktr.ee/Jym for contracts or growth opportunities. Or let just grab some coffee. Column: JosephYawMawunyo

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