COVID-19: US Government evacuates 305 Americans from Ghana

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The US Embassy in Ghana has evacuated 305 Americans from Ghana in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

A statement published on the Embassy’s website said the American citizens were sent back to the US on March 25, 2020.

It added that the repatriation exercise was done with the support from the Government of Ghana.

“On March 25, 2020, with the strong support of the Government of Ghana, the US Embassy in Accra facilitated the return to the United States of 305 American citizens from Ghana to the United States,” the statement said.

Ghana as of today, March 27, 2020, has recorded 136 cases of the virus, three deaths and one recovery.

The US, on the other hand, has so far recorded about 86,000 confirmed cases of the COVID-19 virus.

“The Embassy continues to work with US Government agencies in the United States as well as with the government of Ghana to ensure we can render the best assistance to American citizens at this time. If and when additional flights become available, the Embassy will provide instructions to American citizens in Ghana,” the US Embassy’s statement added.

Meanwhile, the Embassy has subsequently issued guidelines to its citizens in Ghana wishing to return home.

“All U.S. citizens who are interested in the possibility of a chartered repatriation flight to the United States must complete the online request form available here, EVEN IF YOU HAVE ALREADY SENT YOUR DETAILS TO US AT ACSACCRA@STATE.GOV. Please note that a separate request form must be completed for each individual traveller.”

Read the full statement below: 

The U.S. Embassy places the highest priority on assisting American citizens, legal permanent residents, and their U.S. citizen dependents in Ghana.

On March 25, 2020, with the strong support of the Government of Ghana, the U.S. Embassy in Accra facilitated the return to the United States of 305 American citizens from Ghana to the United States.

The Embassy continues to work with U.S. Government agencies in the United States as well as with the government of Ghana to ensure we can render the best assistance to American citizens at this time.

If and when additional flights become available, the Embassy will provide instructions to American citizens in Ghana through the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP), the U.S. Embassy website and social media platforms on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

The Department of State has issued a Global Level 4 Health Advisory for COVID-19.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 2 Global COVID-19 Outbreak Notice.

  • Consult the CDC website for the most up-to-date information.
  • For the most recent information on what you can do to reduce your risk of contracting COVID-19, please see the CDC’s latest recommendations.
  • Visit the COVID-19 crisis page on travel.state.gov for the latest information.
  • Check with your airlines, cruise lines, or travel operators regarding any updated information about your travel plans and/or restrictions.
  • Visit our Embassy webpage on COVID-19 for information on conditions in Ghana.
  • Visit the Department of Homeland Security’s website on the latest travel restrictions to the United States.

Border closure

In attempts to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus pandemic, Ghana closed all its borders from midnight on Sunday, March 22.

The border closure is to last for two weeks according to President Nana Akufo-Addo and “will not apply to goods, supplies and cargo”.

“All our borders; by land, sea and air, will be closed to human traffic for the next two weeks beginning midnight on Sunday,” he said in an address to the Nation on Saturday evening.

Following restrictions from recently reviewed travel protocols, the only admissible travellers into Ghana were Ghanaians and foreign nationals with residence permits in Ghana.

But ahead of the closure, this category of travellers will be subject to a mandatory quarantine.

A total of 1,030 people are on mandatory quarantine. By Thursday [March 26, 2020], 78 of them had tested positive for COVID-19.

Ghana sends UK flight back

Meanwhile, a British Airways bound flight to Ghana, was on Monday, March 23, returned to the UK despite initial permission for the British High Commission to evacuate over 300 people mostly UK nationals from Ghana to the UK.

An initial agreement to a request by the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority said the approval was given by the inter-ministerial committee on COVID-19.

But Citi Business News understands that the decision was rescinded even before the flight could land in Ghana, leaving the foreign nationals stranded.

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