Ghana Emboldened by Low Fatality Rate to Ease Some Restrictions - BLOOMBERG
By Ekow Dontoh
Ghana is keeping its borders closed but easing some other restrictions after recording less pandemic-related deaths than anticipated.
The West African nation, which lifted a 21-day lockdown on April 20, is keeping all borders closed “until further notice,” while allowing some religious gatherings from June 5 and opening secondary schools and universities to students who have exams from June 15, President Nana Akufo-Addo said in a broadcast address late Sunday.
Ghana recorded 36 deaths out of 8,070 reported cases of the virus, as of Sunday. “Our hospitalization and death rates have been, persistently, very low, some of the lowest in Africa and in the world,” he said. “The Ghanaian people are not dying of the virus in the hundreds and thousands that were earlier anticipated.”
The disease has brought three years of annual economic expansion of 6% or more to a sudden halt in the nation of 30 million people, with the finance ministry forecasting that growth could slow to 1.5%, the least in 37 years. The International Monetary Fund agreed to $1 billion in emergency funds to Ghana in April, while a debt standstill from the World Bank will free up $500 million in interest and principal payments.