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Ecstatic Arrival of KNUST, UG, other students from Benin, Togo amidst the pandemic

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Students of University of Cape Coast(UCC), University of Education(UEW), University of Kwame Nkrumah Science and Technology(KNUST), University of Ghana(UG) and Ghana Institute of languages who were sent to Togo and Benin respectively on a year abroad programme have been evacuated back to Ghana following their efficacious studies.

It is an annual programme which is fully funded by the Ghana Scholarship Secretariat and it is particularly given to Ghanaian students studying the French language in the above institutions and other colleges of education.

The aim is to provide the enabling environment for these students to ameliorate their proficiency in the French language.

One question may be echoing loudly in your mind “but how did they come?”

Speaking to one beneficiary of this year’s scholarship programme, Mr Eric D. Kwame, one of the UEW students who made it to the Université d’Abomey-Calavi, Centre Béninois des langues étrangères (CEBELAE), he narrated that, “despite the Covid-19 pandemic, we had a successful programme in CEBELAE, Benin. Our courses ended peacefully without any interruption. This was possible through the cooperative effort of the institution’s management. In fact, they were professional in their duties. Unlike our other colleagues we spent 6 month. We were enrolled on the E-learning to finish our second semester. Our studies was not truncated in any way, it was smooth.

After our exams, we received a notice from the ambassador, Mr Alowe Leo Kabah, together with his cohorts like Mrs Louisa Hanson, deputy head of missions, Mad. Amma Agyeiwaa Boateng, Consulate and welfare and Miss Edith Quarshie, accountant of the embassy who had been with us all through the pandemic era and were pragmatic in discharging their duties, that we should prepare for the Ghana government in collaboration with the Benin foreign minister will bring us back home. We were very excited and on the 11th July, 2020, they made it happen.

We returned by bus and with the excort of the Benin national security, we crossed the Benin and Togo boarders safely then the Ghana national security took over.

We were sent to the airport. They divided us into groups and allocated us to some nice hotel where we were put under a 14-day mandatory quarantine.

Most importantly, we were fascinated to be put under quarantine for two reasons. One, it is poignantly true that many would have raised allegations against the government, my community would not have been an exception. Two, colleagues in KNUST and UG who came before us made it clear that they were treated extremely well to the point that they wanted the government to extend the days after the 14 days has expired and the results had it that they had all tested negative.

Frankly speaking, the treatment under the quarantined mood was not different from what our brothers described to us. In fact, we even wanted them to extend it too.

The only issue was that, we were all gripped in trepidation wondering who was going to be tested positive after our blood samples were taken. Thankfully, all of us tested negative. As I speak with you now, I’m home with my family and everything had returned to it’s normalcy. I’ll say Kudos to the government, irrespective of the widespread economic upheaval caused by this pandemic, he still remembered us and brought us back to our families”.

Meanwhile, our source has it that UCC students who are beneficiaries of this scholarship and had their year abroad in Université de Lomé, Village du Benin, Togo have also arrived safely in Ghana. They are the last batch to return to Ghana and are currently under mandatory quarantine in Accra which cannot be disclosed. They arrived on the 24th July, 2020. They’ll be freed to go home to their families after the 14-days. Some of the students are jokingly appealing to the government to for the extention of the quarantine due to the warm reception.

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Credit: Emmanuel Bartels Ankrah

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