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‘50% pay raise for health workers, free water for all’ — Ghana’s relief plan for citizens







The Ghanaian government has announced some social intervention measures to ease the burden of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on its citizens and frontline health workers.

In a televised address on Sunday, President Nana Akufo-Addo said his government will cover the water bills of its citizens for the months of April, May and June.

The government’s intervention comes amid complaints that some communities do not have running water which undermines the safety measure of hand-washing.

The president said the government was in talks with private water-tanker operators to make water available to vulnerable communities.

He also assured the citizens of stable electricity supply.

“Furthermore, government will absorb the water bills for all Ghanaians for the next three months that is April, May and June,” he said.

“All water tankers, publicly and privately-owned, are also going to be mobilised to ensure the supply of water to all vulnerable communities.

“The Ghana Water Company Ltd and the Electricity Company of Ghana have been directed to ensure the stable supply of water and electricity during this period. In addition, there will be no disconnection of supply.”

Akufo-Addo also announced that all frontline health workers treating COVID-19 patients would receive 50 percent additional salary allowance and that they would not pay taxes on their emoluments for the next 3 months.

The president thanked security forces for ensuring compliance with the lockdown, but said steps are being taken to investigate the excesses of some members of the forces.

He said the government is working with faith-based organisation to provide food for about 400,000, and that more than GHS 8 million has been realised from donations.

He asked citizens to continue to be patient with the government as it strives to contain the spread of COVID-19.

He said more personal protective equipment and hand sanitisers would be distributed to all district hospitals.

He asked all to stay home and keep observing social distancing.

The government had ordered a 14-day lockdown of the country to mitigate the spread of the disease.

It also took steps to disinfect its markets in the state capital.

The country’s confirmed coronavirus cases now stand at 214 with five deaths and 31 recoveries.

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Chuka (Webby) Aniemeka

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