Major streets and markets within the Kumasi metropolis are empty following the order for residents of Accra and Kumasi to restrict movement.
Many shops are empty as police and military patrol communities in the metropolis.
Some banks are however recording high numbers of customers who are trooping in to transact business.
One resident who spoke to Citi News said, “I came in town last night. I’m a health worker and I just closed and going home. When I was coming from the house yesterday, the social distancing wasn’t working at that time. I don’t what know is going to happen today but I’m sure if I get into a taxi or car I hope it’s going to work.”
Another said, “Kumasi is almost like a dead city especially the central business district. A lot of people are indoors. I’m coming from Abuakwa. I need to access some funds at the bank to keep up with this lockdown.”
“All the stalls are closed. There’s nothing serious going on. It’s just a few people walking around. I am to submit my appointment letter to the hospital then I’ll go to the bank,” a lady stated.
President Nana Akufo-Addo, on Friday, March 27, declared a two weeks partial lockdown of Accra and Kumasi effective 1 am on Monday, March 30, 2020 to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus.
This directive involves the cities which have been identified as the epicentres of the novel coronavirus in Ghana.
Kasoa and Tema have also been affected by the order.
The President said the decision “will give us the opportunity to try to halt the spread of the virus, and scale-up effectively contact tracing of persons who have come into contact with infected persons, test them for the virus, and, if necessary, quarantine and isolate them for treatment, should they prove to have the virus.”
He, however, made exemptions to this directive. Some essential service providers like fuel station attendants, the media, banking and telecommunication services will not be forced to lockdown.
Ghana currently has a total number of 152 recorded cases, with five deaths and two recoveries.
133 of the cases were confirmed in the Greater Accra region while 8 were confirmed in the Ashanti Region.
One case has been confirmed in the Upper West region and 10 in the Northern Region.
Some persons who were found to be moving about in Kasoa in the Central Region without tangible reasons have been seized by security personnel stationed within the area.
Citi News’ Calvis Tetteh reports that at least sixteen of them were held at premises of a makeshift facility in the area for a while before being cautioned and asked to return home.
Some of those arrested said although they explained to the security officials their reason for their movement, the personnel did not accept the excuses and decided to arrest them.
At the Jubilee House
The seat of Ghana’s presidency has also been relatively empty after the lockdown kicked off today [Monday].
Citi News’ Sammy Wiafe reported that the usual buzz that characterises activities at the Jubilee House is lost today as the majority of workers have been asked to work from home.
The office of the President, Vice-President and Chief of Staff were however operational.
Only Senior Presidential staffers and key civil servants have been asked to report to work during this period.
Meanwhile, a recent Afrobarometer report released by the Centre for Democratic Development (CDD) suggests that almost 75 percent of Ghanaians are willing to accept restrictions on their freedom of movements, such as curfews and roadblocks, in times of security threats.