COVID-19 Undertakers Suspend Burials

ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH Practitioners made up of the Environmental Health Officers Alliance-Ghana (EHOA-GH) in charge of the burial of COVID-19 dead bodies in the country have laid down their tools.

The Environmental Health Practitioners in the 260 Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) are aggrieved over lack of needed resources to discharge their mandates.

According to them, they have stopped to perform their duties until the Ministry of Health (MoH) for that matter Ghana Health Service (GHS) provides them with the needed tools.

“This has become necessary since over one year now all COVID-19 dead bodies buried in this country by Environmental Health Practitioners all over the country in some MMDAs lack the needed Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs), Hearse, and other incentives which have already been given to our counterparts in the Ghana Health Service (GHS).

“Right from the day Ghana recorded its first COVID-19 Case, the Environmental Health Practitioners who are 100% Health Workers working under the Local Government Service (LGS) that’s Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) were exempted from all Trainings and Workshops which were organized by the Ministry of Health (Ghana Health Service) in all the Sixteen (16) Regions.

“It saddens our hearts at this critical moment on why the Government of Ghana specifically H. E. President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo will neglect the only Public Health Law Enforcement Agents who are mandated by Section 14 of the Local Governance Act, 2016 (ACT 936) with Amendment (ACT 940) and E. I. 4 of 1976 in discharge of our mandated duties or job descriptions.

“We EHOA-GH want to state on record without any fear or favour reference to Article 191 of the 1992 Constitution of the Republic of Ghana and some Sections of the Labour Act, 2003 (ACT 651) that we have withdrawn our Services as enshrined in the Section 50 clause (c) of the Public Health Act, 2012 (ACT 851) with immediate effect,” a statement issued on August 18, 2021 and signed by Yaw Akwaa Lartey, Acting District Environmental Health Officer said.

The EHOA-GH cautioned all Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives and any other person in the MMDAs who will try to victimize any of our members on all COVID- 19 Burials agent will have the full forces of the Association descending on such a person without any fear or favour.

They therefore urged all their members to remain calm as executives of the association engaged government on the needed modus operandi in the discharge of their duties.

By Vincent Kubi