Zanetor Rawlings, Medical Doctor and Member of Parliament for Klottey Korle , says
government ‘has not done enough’ to ensure the safety and security of the
market traders as well those who visit them following the outbreak of the novel
Coronavirus in Ghana.
According to her, the markets and transportation network are crucial to maintaining our food supply as a nation adding that the Akufo-Addo-led administration has not prioritized the markets in the rationale behind the Restrictions Bill laid out and given accent to.
Speaking during a media encounter by the National Democratic Congress’ COVID-19 Technical Team, Zanetor Rawlings said: “The markets and transportation network are crucial to maintaining our food supply as a nation and this was the rationale behind the omission of the markets and commercial drivers from the restrictions bill laid out by the President.”
“Given this fact, not enough has been done to ensure the safety and security of the market traders as well as those who visit them. Their protection should have been a top priority in anticipation of and subsequent to the imposition of the Restrictions Bill.”
She added that the main preventative measures against the spread of the virus such as hand washing and social distancing are very difficult to adhere to given our densely populated communities.
“Our markets and our public spaces and the intermittent access and in some cases the lack of access to water. The successful end to this crisis will require the involvement of the government in engaging the citizenry including civil society and the security apparatus to support efforts within the community,” Zanetor Rawlings said.
“There must be community ownership and organizing in executing the response interventions in order to break the cycle of transmission and infection through sustained behavior modification at all levels,” she added.
She advised that the various assemblies must, as a matter of urgency, provide ‘Veronica buckets, soaps and disinfectants for all markets across the country to reduce the risk of exposure and risk of transmission of the virus.
“This must be coupled with an educational drive by the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) and health directorates at the district level,” she added.
Meanwhile, former President John Dramani Mahama has said that the opposition NDC has submitted a proposal of a national action plan on combating the novel coronavirus to the Speaker of Parliament.
Speaking at a service to end three days of prayer and fasting declared by the NDC, John Mahama indicated that as evidence of their commitment to assisting government in the fight against the pandemic, a technical team has been put together to spearhead the affairs of the national action plan.
Some members of the technical team include; Nana Kofi Quakyi, Assistant Professor in Public Health/Specialist in Health Economics, Dr. Jehu Appiah: Senior Medical Consultant and former General Secretary of the Ghana Medical Association, Dr. Zanetor Rawlings, Medical Doctor, Alex Segbefia, Former Minister of Health, among others.