More night clubs, hospitality centres and event places are voluntarily shutting down in Accra due to the coronavirus pandemic.
This is coming after President Akufo-Addo directed schools in the country to shut down effective Monday, March 16, 2020.
The President gave the order when he addressed the nation on Sunday, March 15, 2020.
“All Universities, Senior High Schools, and basic schools, i.e. public and private schools, will be closed Monday, 16th March 2020, till further notice. The Ministry of Education, in collaboration with the Ministry of Communication, has been tasked to roll out distance learning programmes,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo, however, said students who will be taking part in this year’s Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) and the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) “will be allowed to attend school to prepare for their examinations, but with prescribed social distancing protocols.”
The government has also banned all public gatherings including conferences, workshops, funerals, festivals, political rallies, church activities, and other related events as part of measures to stop the spread of coronavirus in the country.
However, some businesses and even night clubs were given some window of opportunity to still work for now. But it appears that some of these institutions are carrying out their shutdowns to help mitigate the spread of the virus in the country.
Which institutions are shutting down?
Checks by JoyBusiness show that Bloombar at Osu has communicated to their clients through its social media platform that it would be shutting down for a certain period.
“Hello everyone, due to the virus, we have decided to close our doors temporarily to everyone including our hardworking staff can stay healthy and safe at home, We look forward to coming back with a great experience.”
Another place which has been the hang out for many in the capital – SandBox, has also announced on their Instagram page that it has closed its space. According to them this is in line with the president directive about public gatherings.
Silver Bird Cinema’s Ghana has also disclosed that its cinemas at West Hills and Accra Mall would be shut down until further notice.
Luna Rooftop Bar at the airport residential area, in their communication, said: “With respect to recent developments on COVID 19, we wish to inform our customers that LUNA will be on break till further notice.”
“We understand that the severity of the situation and car about your health and safety” Luna Bar managers added.
What are other pubs, night clubs and restaurants doing?
It appears others that have not shut down have put in place some strict hygienic protocols for all their clients.
Others too have notified their clients that they are willing to deliver the food and enquires requires to their doorsteps.
Polo Club Restaurant at Airport also announced that “In this unprecedented time are making proactive decisions to support the health and wellbeing of our people customers communities,” therefore “Polo Club will start delivering your favourite food to your home.”
Honeysuckle has also disclosed that “to prevent the COVID 19, all our branches are using infrared thermometers to test staff and customers every day upon entry to each of our branches.
“Should anyone have a temperature higher than 37.5°C they will be asked to leave and advised to receive medical attention” it added in the notice.
Managers of the facility say to assist their customers that are “social distancing, we are offering 10 percent off all food orders from labone with free delivery in Airport , Dzorwulu , Labone , Cantonments , Spintex and Ridge.”
Should all night clubs shut down?
There is currently some ambiguity about whether night clubs and pubs are allowed to operate under the current arraignment.
But speaking to JoyBusiness, Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Tourism Authority, Akwasi Agyeman said there was no ambiguity about the President’s directive that every public gathering that is more than 25 should be halted, adding that “ any night club or closed-place that accommodate more than 25 people should shut down”.
He added that all these measures are aimed at curbing the spread of the pandemic and it should be accepted by all.
Mr Agyeman added that the government is currently working on something for the industry to help cushion them from the expected revenue loss that has come about as a result of the challenge.
He also added that the government is committed to helping those in the hospitality industry in these times.