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Togolese who entered Ghana illegally is Bono Region’s first Covid-19 case

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The first person to test positive for the novel coronavirus in the Bono Region is a Togolese national who entered the country illegally, the Regional Minister has revealed.

This forms part of the 372 new cases that brought the country’s tally to 3,091 as announced by the Ghana Health Service on Thursday.
The new case detected in the Jaman North District makes Bono Region the 13th region to record a case.

Evelyn Ama Kumi-Richardson in a statement said the 27-year-old was “in the company of nine others through unapproved routes in the Jaman North district capital, Sampa.
“He was apprehended along with the others during the last week of April 2020, by personnel of the Ghana Immigration Service…He has since been placed in quarantine at Sampa,” she said.

The Minister added that the nine others been handed over to Immigration Service and National Security officials for substantive action.
Thursday’s briefing also indicated contact tracers have been dispatched across the region to “take samples from identified primary contacts of the quarantined persons.”

BRIEFING BY THE BONO REGIONAL MINISTER ON THE COVID-19 FIRST CASE IN THE BONO REGION

Since receiving an alert from the Director-General of the Ghana Health Service of the outbreak of the novel coronavirus pandemic, on January 23 2020, the Regional Coordinating Council (RCC) and the Regional Public Health Emergency Management Committee have jointly implemented a range of preventive measures in relating to pandemic preparedness and response – key among our activities has been inter-agency coordination, laboratory testing, case management and infection prevention, social mobilization and risk communication, and enhanced port surveillance.
The Bono Region recorded its first suspected case of Covid-19 on the 9th March 2020. We have nonetheless investigated 583 suspected cases, taken 202 samples, and received the results of 128 samples, one of which tested positive for Covid-19. The outstanding samples yet to be received are 74.

The positive case under reference is that of a 27-year-old Togolese man who illegally entered the country in the company of 9 others through unapproved routes in the Jaman North district capital, Sampa. He was apprehended along with the others during the last week of April 2020, by personnel of the Ghana Immigration Service.

Test results received on 6th May 2020 confirmed that all but one of the 10 illegal immigrants was positive. He has since been placed in quarantine at Sampa. The remaining 9 illegal immigrants have meanwhile been handed over to Immigration and National Security officials for substantive action.
As this afternoon [May 7,], contact tracing teams have been to the field to take samples from identified primary contacts of the quarantinee. We have stepped up surveillance in our 12 districts to enable us to gain a broader picture of the state of infection within the region and thereby respond appropriately.

We have also increased behavior change communication (BCC) and continue to emphasize social distancing to prevent community spread.

I urge everyone in the Region to adhere fully to the hygiene protocols announced by the President and the Ghana Health Service. There should be no cause for fear or panic. Let us remain calm while observing the requisite social distancing protocols and the wearing of face-masks. I am hopeful that with these measures, we will successfully prevail against the virus, thank you.
Long live Bono Region; long live Ghana.

Evelyn Ama Kumi-Richardson
Regional Minister

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