Travelers from Ghana to the United Kingdom are expected to be exempted from the new Covid-19 travel directives regarding vaccine certificates which takes effect in October.
A press release from the British High Commission in Accra, dated September, 24 explained that, “the UK is working to recognise vaccine certificates from other countries as part of a phased review of many Covid-19 certificates from countries across the world. This includes recognising Ghana’s vaccine certificate, and in the spirit of our long term partnership, we are working with Ghana’s Ministry of Health to ensure that this happens as soon as possible.”
The announcement comes after resentment greeted the UK travel advisory that would have included Ghana among countries whose vaccine certificates will not be accepted.
“Statements that Covid-19 Vaccines administered in Ghana are not approved in the UK are untrue,” parts of the press release read.
According to the travel updates issued by the UK, from October 4, one will qualify as fully vaccinated if they are “vaccinated under an approved vaccination programme in the UK, Europe, USA or UK vaccine programme overseas with a full course of the Oxford/ AstraZeneca, Pfizer, BioNTech, Moderna or Janssen vaccines from a relevant public health body in several countries including Australia, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Singapore.”
Subsequently, the UK government added Covishield, the India-manufactured Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine, to an updated international travel advisory.
This meant that Ghanaian travellers who have been fully vaccinated with Covishield will nonetheless have to undergo 10 days of quarantine in the UK, according to UK officials.
Speaking at the 76th United Nations General Assembly on September 22, President Akufo-Addo criticized the directive describing it as unfortunate.
According to him, “what is intriguing is the fact that this vaccine was donated to African countries through the COVAX facility. The use of vaccines as a tool for immigration control will be a truly retrogressive step.”
But in the latest press release, the UK has communicated its effort towards delisting Ghana from the affected countries.
The statement issued on September 24 explained that “the UK is working to recognise vaccine certificates from other countries as part of a phased review of the many Covid-19 vaccine certificates issued across the world.”
“This includes recognising Ghana’s vaccine certificate, and in the spirit of our long term partnership, we are working with Ghana’s Ministry of Health to ensure that this happens as soon as possible,” he added.
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