67 Arrivals Detained Over Covid-19 Test

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Sixty-seven travellers who arrived at the Kotoka International Airport (KIA) last Sunday have been detained for failing to go through the mandatory Covid–19 test.

Information gathered by the DAILY GUIDE indicated that the travellers were part of those who arrived from Dubai, Oman, Jordan, Iraq, Lebanon and Kuwait.

On arrival, information revealed that 82 of the passengers refused to pay the US$150 to enable them undergo the Covid-19 test and wanted to force their way out of the airport.

As a result, Aviation security detained them at the transit hall for three hours to enable the authorities take a decision in the matter.

“At a point, the Aviation security could no longer handle the situation as the travellers became agitated and had to call on the police, including personnel form the Formed Police Unit (FPU), to manage the situation around 1:00pm,” the source said.

The source said, with police assistance, a bus was brought in to move the travellers from the transit hall to a location to enable authorities take a decision on the matter and in the process, 14 of them agreed to pay and take the test but the 67 others, who refused, were sent to the Pentecost Convention Centre in Kasoa Millenium City being used as a Covid-19 Isolation Centre.

The Greater Accra Regional Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Effia Tenge, when contacted, said they were called to manage the situation and calm tempers.

It would be recalled that the government, as part of measures to reopen the country’s airport to traffic, mandated travelers to take a PCR test 72 hours prior to visiting the country and also undergo a US$150 antigen test after arriving at the airport.

The Covid-19 testing system deployed at the KIA has so far detected six positive cases of the viral infection among passengers who arrived, according to the Deputy Minister of Health, Dr. Bernard Oko-Boye.

He said the first case was recorded on September 4, with two others on September 5 and the other three on September 6.

Dr. Oko-Boye said the persons involved had reported with a negative PCR test from their countries of origin but tested positive when the second test was conducted on arrival.

By Linda Tenyah-Ayettey

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