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Opinions Tue, 7 Apr 2020

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Coronavirus: Immigration Officers not happy

So what is the president of Ghana trying to tell those of us working at the various entry points, ensuring that no one enters the country with the Coronavirus disease?

If I was well informed, most of the cases we have in Ghana now were imported cases; meaning the victims contracted the virus outside the shores of Ghana and entered the country with it.

There is no way a person can enter Ghana without passing through the hands of an immigration officer unless he/she entered through an unapproved route.

So my question to the president: between those of us working at the various entry points and those you just gave an insurance package of Ghc 350,000 in addition to 50% allowance of their basic salary, who is at a higher risk of contracting the virus first?

Before you point out to us that our airports and land borders are closed, do not forget there are thousands of unapproved routes immigration officers are assiduously patrolling 24/7 to ensure these places are well secured.

I work at the Ghana/Togo border at Aflao and I can attest to the fact that we have made arrests of not less than 200 travellers who entered the country illegally without been screened through our unapproved routes despite the closure of our borders.

We patrol without any personal protective equipments, arrest these travellers, sit together with them in the same vehicle to be transported to quarantine centers for the health professionals to check their status.

Our activities for the past weeks since the closure of our borders has always been in the news, yet, despite all these risks we take to ensure that citizens of Ghana are protected from this deadly virus, the government has decided to turn a blind eye on our efforts.

To add more salt to injury, whiles some public and civil servants have been granted leave to stay home and enjoy the comfort of theirs beds because of COVID 19, our working hours as immigration officers has rather been increased without any allowance paid us.

Immigration officers like myself who are on "STUDY LEAVE" have been ordered to return to base because the country needs our services.Now, we are been forced to combine working tirelessly with attending lectures online due to the closure of schools.

The President should be made aware that immigration officers are not happy and we are so much aware of the fact that we can not hit the streets to demonstrate like other public servants do but he should not forget, we are not restricted from voting during elections.WE STILL HAVE OUR VOTER ID CARDS WITH US, THEY ARE NOT MISSING!

I just wish any politician or someone with links to the presidency could forward this message there for me.????????

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Best Regards,

Columnist: Anonymous

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