Hours before President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo announced that he has instructed James Oppong-Boanuh, the Inspector General of Police to order officers of the Ghana Police Service to ensure strict adherence of the safety protocols on the coronavirus, some officers of the service were blatantly breaching the protocols.
A viral photo from Kumasi Asante Kotoko’s 1-1 drawn game with West African Football Academy (WAFA) shows that personnel of the police service who had been deployed to maintain security and ensure adherence to the Covid-19 protocols at the venue were flouting the rules themselves.
The officers, numbering about five, while taking a photo with Kotoko’s Brazilian star Fabio Gama disregarded the safety measures.
Of the five, one was without nose mask, two had their nose masks lowered to the chin and the other two had their masks properly on.
A key factor in their deployment to the venue was to ensure that spectators obey the social distancing protocols, however, in the viral photo, social distancing protocols were breached.
In his 22nd address on the pandemic, delivering on Sunday evening, President Akufo-Addo directed the IGP to ensure that directive on nose masks and other safety protocols are followed.
“I have instructed the Inspector General of Police to direct officers, men and women of the Police Service to ensure the rigorous enforcement of the law on mask-wearing at all public places and in public transport. They are also to ensure the closure of all nightclubs, pubs, cinemas and beaches that may be operating in defiance of the law. They will be assisted by the other security agencies if need be,” he said.
Akufo-Addo added that “persons in market places, workplaces, and operators of public transport must conduct their activities in accordance with the hygiene and safety protocols. The wearing of masks in these places is mandatory. Regulatory agencies will undertake random checks to ensure conformity with COVID-19 rules. Should any facility or institution fail to comply with these directives, its activities will be immediately prohibited, and appropriate sanctions applied.”
The match was Gama’s second full game for Kotoko, having impressed in their midweek game against Liberty Professionals.