March has felt like such a hectic month! Many of us went from attending Ghana’s 63rd Independence celebrations at the beginning of the month, to now adjusting to life on lockdown. Life really came at us all fast. Regardless of everything going on, we will still try and remain positive.
With that being said, here are some updates from us along with news from Ghana.
What’s next from us?
As mentioned in our previous email, due to the Coronavirus we have had to unfortunately postpone our Sip & Paint event in light of the social distancing advice. This was going to be a fun event to raise money for a good cause, but we hope that once all of this is over, we will be able to host this event.
As you all know, we rely on the funds raised from our events, along with your donations to fund our projects in Ghana. We do this with the hopes of bettering the people around it to help with their lifestyle and their way of thinking. We understand these times are trying, however we would love for you to still donate to our current project so that we may continue to give back to Ghana.
On the 18th of March, Ghana became the first sub-Saharan Africa country to cut interest rates in response to the Coronavirus, reducing its benchmark to an eight-year low. The central bank cut key rate to an 8 year low of 14.5% from 16%. The central bank also announced additional key measures to support the economy, such as reducing the conservation buffer for banks to 1.5% from 3%, which effectively cuts the capital-adequacy ratio to 11.5% from 13%.
As of the 28th of March, only three regions have reported Coronavirus cases, namely the Greater Accra, Ashanti and Upper West Regions. Moreover, a total of 2,519 people have been tested for the virus and of those individuals, 141 have tested positive.
As part of measures to stop the further spread of Corona Virus, Ghana is officially going into a lockdown as of 30th of March for two weeks (subject to review). These stricter measures have been put in place contain and halt the spread of the virus in places identified as the ‘hotspots’ of the infections – Accra, Tema, Kasoa and Kumasi. According to President Nana Akuffo-Addo, these measures will provide Ghana with the chance to prevent the further escalation of numbers. These measures will see a ban on inter-city movement of vehicles and aircrafts, except for those providing essential services and carrying cargo.
You can follow The Ministry of Information on Twitter (@moigovgh) for more updates on the COVID-19 situation in Ghana.
In other news, this month also saw Ghana officially legalising cannabis for health and industrial purposes in its hopes to derive economic and health benefits from the substance. The new law in place will now see drug abuse as a public health issue rather than a criminal offence.
We hope you all continue to stay safe and adhere to the advice regarding the lockdown.
Sources: Ghana Web, Bloomberg