The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration has said it has successfully completed the evacuation of stranded Ghanaians abroad.
This follows the reopening of the Kotoka International Airport to commercial flights on Tuesday, 1 September 2020.
According to the ministry, the evacuation exercise, which commenced on Saturday, 23 May 2020, after the closure of the borders in order to contain the spread of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic, brought home over 9,000 Ghanaians and resident permit-holders from around the world.
A statement issued by the ministry on Friday, 11 September 2020, said: “To address cases of Ghanaians in distress, the government, assisted and covered the cost of travel and quarantine of a number Ghanaians in particular, those arriving from China, Iraq, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, UAE and all the evacuations undertaken within the West African region including all students who arrived during the period.”
The ministry also disclosed that it received financial support from well-meaning Ghanaians, including Mr Kennedy Agyapong, MP for Assin Central, who made a personal donation of USD200,000 and raised an additional amount of USD228,650 from his friends and associates, totalling USD428,650, toward the evacuation of Ghanaians from Lebanon; and, also, the Sethi Brothers, who donated GHS 200,001 to defray the cost of quarantine for passengers arriving from the United Kingdom,”
The ministry further cautioned the general public to “continue to observe the various protocols instituted to contain the virus, and strictly adhere to global travel rules and regulations prior to travelling out of Ghana as well as register with Ghana Missions abroad wherever their final destination may be.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo announced the reopening of Ghana’s international airport in an address to the nation on Sunday, 30 August 2020.
Meanwhile, passengers arriving in Ghana are to pay an amount of USD 150 for a 30-minute PCR COVID-19 test to prevent the importation of the virus but some travellers and critics say the amount is on the high side.