General News of Saturday, 18 September 2021
Western Regional Secretary of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Charles Bissue has explained the importance of keeping land borders closed regardless of demonstrations calling for their reopening.
According to him, the land borders are difficult to control, hence making it difficult to ensure COVID-19 travel measures are enforced. He believes the immediate reopening of the land borders without definite measures to check the inflow and outflow of human traffic will spell doom for the country.
Comparing the air and sea borders to the land borders, Charles Bissue said, “Our land borders are polarized and we cannot protect it at a time where we are fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic. Even if we require COVID-19 tests to allow people to travel via our land borders, it will still be a problem for us. There are many unauthorized routes being used by people and we can’t supervise all of them making it risky to reopen them immediately.
“The airport and land borders are more secure and easy to monitor because the security there is stronger than the land borders. This gives us more reason to strengthen security at our land borders.”
In an interview with Happy98.9FM’s Don Kwabena Prah on the Epa Hoa Daben political talk show, the politician appealed to border towns to give the government some time to implement measures for the safe reopening of land borders.
“Not all situations will favour us in the case of a pandemic and we should understand the government. I think the government is doing well and this issue of the reopening of land borders isn’t something we should stretch. We need to take a critical look at it and make sure it works,” he stated.
In July, the Member of Parliament (MP) for Ketu South in the Volta Region, Abla Dzifa Gomashie, urged the government to consider reopening the land borders at key entry points in her constituency to alleviate the economic stress being suffered by her constituents.
She said the request was necessitated by the distress her constituents are currently going through due to the loss of capital and allow those who could afford to be allowed in and out of the country.
However, her pleas went unrealized and residents of Ketu South in the Volta Region and Elubo in the Western Region have protested to demand the reopening of land borders.
The border has been closed to passenger traffic since March 2020 due to COVID-19.