The National Union of Ghana Students (NUGS) has reiterated calls for Ghana government to evacuate its nationals studying in the novel coronavirus-hit Wuhan and Hubei provinces to safer spots.

The Chinese cities have become the epicenter of the deadly disease said to be spreading fast among locals and in other jurisdictions.

Countries such as the US, UK among others triggered evacuation protocol following the outbreak which has seen many of their nationals transported to continue preventive treatment in their home countries.

But the Ghanaian students in the city have seen a different fate.

The stranded students say they have been emotionally traumatised and unable to access basic necessities due to the mode of spread.

On Monday, some 103 died in Hubei province alone, a daily record, and the national death toll is now 1,016, according to reports.

But the number of new infections nationally was down almost 20% from the day before, from 3,062 to 2,478.

In a statement, the Secretary for Education of NUGS, Stallon Nii Okine called on the government to “as a matter of urgency, evacuate the Ghanaian nationals from Wuhan and the Hubei Province to a safer precinct within China since there are safer provinces.”

The China chapter of the National Union of Ghana Students (NUGS) and the University Students’ Association of Ghana (USAG) since the outbreak, have appealed to government to evacuate all Ghanaian students in China to avoid any possible contraction of the contagious coronavirus.

According to Nii Okine, “leaving our Citizens deserted in another country with no hope of help from their country and its leadership is so terrifying and a threat to patriotism and nation-building knowing that these are young energetic youth who are the future of our nation.”

He urged that government explores very innovative measures to ensure the protection of citizens in China as it will go a long way “to save the face and integrity of Ghana.”

No Ghanaian student in China has contracted coronavirus

The Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration Ministry has earlier disclosed that no Ghanaian student in coronavirus-hit China has been infected with the disease.

In a statement copied to JoyNews, the Ministry assured all parents, relatives and friends of Ghanaians in China that “the Embassy of Ghana in Beijing and the Consulate-General in Guangzhou are in contact with leadership of the Ghanaian community and the National Union of Ghana Students – China” for frequent briefing on the welfare of all Ghanaian nationals.

The Ministry says it has advised all Ghanaians to stay indoors and adhere to preventive precautions outlined by Chinese authorities.

Here are tips to help you stay safe from the new virus.

Make handwashing a priority

Always endeavour to wash your hands regularly. Wet your hands with clear running water and soap.

Lather your hands and scrub the back of your hands, between your fingers and under your nails. After this, rinse the lather off thoroughly and dry the water off.

Always cover your mouth when coughing or sneezing

Make it a habit to cover your mouth with a tissue when you sneeze or couch to prevent the spread of the virus.

Immediately after using the tissue, dispose of it immediately in a bin and wash your hand. In the absence of a tissue, cover your mouth with an elbow to prevent contact with others.

Face masks are an option

This offers some amount of safety as they block little droplet from escaping.

However, the masks leave the eyes exposed and so far, there have been recorded cases of infection through the eye.

Report to a medical centre without delay   
Quickly seek medical attention when you have fevers, cough and sudden breathing difficulty. It is also very important to share your recent travel history with medical professionals.

Avoid direct, unprotected contact with animals 

In affected areas, you must avoid touching live animals especially without any form of protection. Avoid eating raw or semi-cooked animal products in such areas as well.

If you have returned from any affected area in China and have developed a sore throat, high temperature, runny nose or difficulty in breathing, don’t move outside your home until authorized by a healthcare provider.