Claim:

Government is considering the reopening of borders to human traffic next week.

Verdict: FALSE

Explanation

Following the coronavirus pandemic and its related impact, President Akufo-Addo in April announced a three-week partial lockdown of Accra and Kumasi associated with the closure of the country’s borders and other entry points in a bid to stop the spread of the virus.

However, on May 1, 2020, the president announced an extension of the border closure to May 31, 2020 which was since scrapped. Now, there is an indefinite closure and extension of the country’s borders to international and human traffic as a result of the persistent spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

In his 14th address to the nation, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo declared a further easing of COVID-19 induced restrictions indicating a path towards returning to normalcy in order to revive social and economic livelihood.

“Life cannot be put on hold indefinitely, and Ghana cannot remain in a never-ending crisis management situation. That is why we have been putting measures in place to gradually restore some normalcy in our social and economic lives, as we learn to cope with the reality of the virus,” Akufo-Addo noted.

Although the president revealed that Ghana’s borders will remain closed until further notice, a special dispensation was granted to Ghanaian nationals who seek to return home from abroad and these persons will be required to undergo a 14-day mandatory quarantine.

The newly-issued directives also allowed for the reopening of some tourist centres and open-air drinking spots as well as the easing of restrictions for domestic flights and transportation services.

Checks by GhanaWeb reveal a Facebook post claiming the Minister for Aviation, Joseph Kofi Adda suggesting; “Government to consider opening borders and airports next week”.

The post also claimed that the Minister said this while speaking on Accra based radio station JoyFM.

The claim was posted on Facebook by a user; “JM BA Kwadwo”; and has since been shared on other social media platforms.

Verification

When GhanaWeb contacted the Public Relations Officer at the Aviation Ministry, Mrs. Madeleine Insaidoo, said the sector minister, Joseph Kofi Adda has in no way stated, granted an interview or issued a press release to that effect for the reopening of the country’s borders.

Mrs Insaidoo labelled the suggestions as false and urged that they be disregarded by the public.

“There’s not going to be any reopening of borders as of yet as its been claimed on Facebook and the minister [Joseph Kofi Adda] has not granted an interview to that effect either so these claims that are going around are indeed false. We are going to issue a statement to that effect soon,” she said.

The official Facebook account of the Aviation Ministry; ‘Ministry of Aviation Ghana’ some few minutes later issued a circular debunking the claims that Ghana’s border entry points will be reopened next week.

“The Ministry wishes to inform the general public that the above news item is false and that at no point in time, has Hon. Joseph Kofi Adda, Minister for Aviation stated this in any interview or press release. So, it should be disregarded,” the circular read.

Conclusion

The Facebook post and claim contains no element of parody or satire but clear falsehood purposely twisted to misinform the general public about the reopening of the country’s borders.

GhanaWeb, therefore, finds the claim to be false and misguided.

The reporter produced this fact-check under the auspices of the Dubawa 2020 Fellowship in partnership with GhanaWeb.com to facilitate the ethos of “truth” in journalism to enhance media literacy in the country.

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