Ghana is a sovereign state so it must be left alone to…, says Covid-19 taskforce Dr Bernard Okoe Boye

Following the alleged suspected falsification of Covid-19 entry test results to Ghana at the Kotoka International Airport (KIA) by the two Ghanaian but naturalised American ladies about five days ago, the former Deputy Health Minister who is a member of the Ghana Covid-19 taskforce, reacted to the outbursts by the women. Even though he was measured, exercised extreme patience and professionalism in his response, I am still not enthused by certain statements he made.

He said among other things that Ghana is a sovereign state hence has the right to make her own laws as suits her. Such laws are to be obligatorily respected and abided by. No matter how repugnant the laws may be, as long as they are made in Ghana, and for Ghanaians and those in the country or arriving in the country, they are to be enforced and respected by all and sundry without any ifs and buts, he surely seems to emphasize.

The women became angrily vociferous when their Covid-19 self-test results at the airport confirming their negative test results prior to departing from the USA about eleven hours earlier, were refused when they were said to have tested positive to the Covid-19 by the test carried out by the government-sponsored organisation in charge of testing all travellers arriving at the airport for Covid-19 infection.

I am not going to dwell too much on what the ladies said but the quick rebuttal by Dr Okoe Boye, a medical practitioner and former Deputy Health Minister.

1. He said Ghana is a sovereign state hence has the right to uphold, defend and enforce the obedience of her laws without anyone being allowed to use any foreign rules, regulations and laws to compare in attempts to rubbish Ghanaian laws.

2. Any laboratory test is not absolute.

3. Those Ghanaians residing abroad should not think they are superior to their compatriots living in Ghana.

Let me limit myself to the above three statements he nearly rancorously made in a posted video in rebuttal to the genuine concerns, although agitatedly expressed by the women in question.

Yes, Ghana is no doubt a sovereign country. However, does Ghana not subscribe to certain international protocols? In order not to beat about the bush, let me ask Dr Okoe Boye a few pertinent questions aimed at rubbishing those sweeping statements he made.

a. What is so far Ghana’s major contribution towards worldwide medical science to overcoming the many and varied health and medical issues confronting the world and humankind?

b. Does Ghana acknowledge medicines, medical products and equipment, medical researches and findings, by other advanced foreign countries for use or application in Ghana?

c. Has Ghana produced her own Covid-19 test kits, vaccines, equipment and researches without utter or partial reliance on those produced in, and supplied by, the advanced Whiteman’s countries?

d. If Ghana in any way relies on foreign equipment, vaccines, medical products and drugs, research findings, etc., to containing or fighting the deadly Covid-19 pandemic and other diseases afflicting the country and her citizenry, does it negate or not, her sovereignty?

e. If in the obvious instance of Ghana overly relying on, and applying, foreign medicines, equipment and products approved and certified for global use by the World Health Organization (WHO) or competent foreign bodies, does it not go to ridicule Dr Okoe Boye’s blatant assertion that Ghana is a sovereign country hence only what she decides and prescribes go without any reference to, or interference by, foreign methods?

f. Does a medicine, medical equipment or product, clinically certified and approved for use in the United States of America, the United Kingdom, France or Germany, by their medical scientists or National Standard Boards, be acceptable for use in Ghana? This is where such product is good for both black and white people and suitable for both temperate and tropical climatic conditions or countries.

g. If say, a medicine or vaccine manufactured in the Whiteman’s land and not specifically labelled as “for use only in Africa and for black people”, but for general use to fight a particular disease tormenting the world is taken to Ghana, will it be allowed to be used if Ghana is faced with same disease as in Covid-19?

h. To be honest with ourselves and truthful to scientific development, medicines manufactured in Ghana and approved by Ghana Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) and those manufactured in Germany, France, the United Kingdom or the United States of America, for fighting or treating a particular disease, which one will be more welcome to the world and even Ghanaians?

On statement no.2 by Dr Okoe Boye, yes, no laboratory test is conclusive or absolute. I know this for a fact, following Covid-19 survey test conducted by St Mary’s University in London on behalf of the UK National Health Service (NHS) of which I was a volunteer participant. This survey was to find out more about the efficacy of the Covid-19 vaccines as to whether the vaccine has helped build antibodies in those who have been jabbed or people who had contracted Covid-19 have acquired antibodies. I am not going into the details but the explanatory document enclosed in the home test pack emphasised that the result could not be absolute same as asserted by Dr Okoe Boye.

Going strictly by the statement, how do we confirm that the Covid-19 entry test being conducted at the Kotoka International Airport is turning out the correct results acceptable for whether or not one is Covid-19 positive? Why are the test results by the self-test kits used by the two Ghanaian women at the airport not accepted whereas same results are accepted in America, Britain and any advanced country using them? Is Ghana more developed in the medical field than the mentioned countries? Does Ghana know better than the mentioned countries?

On point no. 3, Ghanaians living abroad don’t claim to be wiser than their brothers and sisters living in Ghana. However, they always boldly insist on their rights and desire to see to the laws of the land being respected and applied as they should, whereas those in Ghana accept the corruption of the laws in the belief of the “Ghana dee saa” mentality hence the official corruption galore in the country.

To be continued.

Rockson Adofo