Coronavirus, nicknamed COVID-19 pandemic is showing no signs of abating soon in most parts of the world, as the numbers keep soaring on a daily basis, with many recorded deaths.
Since the outbreak of the deadly virus in Wuhan China last year, with many countries, including Ghana sometime this year joined the club of nationswith infected cases, it became imperative for the government to take certain measures to safeguard the lives of its citizens.
On March 27, president Akufo-Addo, announced the partial lockdown of Greater Accra region and Greater Kumasi metropolitan area.
Following the lockdown, the government introduced some palliative, included in that was the feeding of the vulnerable and the needy in society.
In his address to the nation, president Akufo-Addo,announced 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.
According to him, “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.”
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 today and will begin in Kumasi tomorrow. 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.”
In this dark moment in the life of this nation, a committed and purposeful leadership is what we require to lead with the light of hope and comfort; reassuring the people that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
This is why as a newspaper, we are of the opinion that, the government must come clear on how it arrived at the numbers, when information available to this paper, suggests that, it is now that, it is collecting data on the vulnerable and the needy in society.
We see this as a golden opportunity for the Akufo-Addo administration to demonstrate uncommon courage and commitment by showing how truly transparent it is, by providing Ghanaians further and better particulars on the 400,000 Ghanaians it fed during the lockdown.
The welfare and wellbeing of the generality of Ghanaians, is the primary constitutional responsibility of government to the people, but in that lies accountability, which is required of the government at every point in time.
The perceived lack of transparency which has been with us, since 1992, is what has created the mistrust we see these days in everything the government does.
The Akufo-Addo administration, has the unique opportunity to shine light on all its expenditure, as far as the coronavirus pandemic is concern, else in the not too distant future, we will use contract tracing to identify all the 400,000, people it claimed it fed.