A total of 1107 foreign nationals who entered Ghana illegally following the closure of borders on March 18, 2020 as a precautionary measure to avoid the spread of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) have been arrested in the Bono Region.
The Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) who made this known said the tally of arrests in the Bono Region are from March March 18, 2020 to date.
The illegal immigrants were from Togo, Cote d’Ivoire, Burkina Faso, Niger, Nigeria, Benin and Guinea.
They were aided to enter Ghana through unapproved routes.
Some residents at the border towns and villages used motorbikes to carry them into Ghana and collect monies from them, according to the GIS.
The latest arrest of 17 of such illegal immigrants, comprising eight Togolese and nine Burkinabes, was made at the Kato Inland Immigration Check Point, near Berekum on Thursday, May 14, 2020.
The Kato Check Point was created to provide officials of the GIS an opportunity to profile passengers in order to identify foreign immigrants who might have used unapproved routes to enter Ghana.
The Bono Regional Commander of the GIS, Assistant Commissioner of Immigration (ACI), Charles Yaw Bediako told Graphic Online in an interview that all the 1107 foreigners have since been sent back to their respective countries.
He gave the breakdown of statistics of the various countries whose nationals entered Ghana illegally through the Bono region as:
Togolese – 521;
Ivorians – 224;
Nigeriens – 34;
Beninese – 5
Guinea – 1
PHOTO: Bono Regional Commander of the Ghana Immigration Service , Assistant Commissioner of Immigration (ACI) Charles Yaw Bediako
ACI Bediako explained that the illegal immigrants were arrested at check points at Gonokrom and Kofibadukrom in the Dormaa Central Municipality, Nkrankwanta in the West District, Sampa in the Jaman North District, Atronie, Yawhima and Abesim in the Sunyani Municipality, Tainso in the Tain District, Kato in the Berekum Municipality and Atuna and Kwameseikrom in the Jaman South Municipality.
He stated that 22 motorbikes used by some local residents at Nkrankwanta to carry the illegal immigrants had been impounded by officials of the GIS.
According to ACI Bediako, officials of the GIS manning the various border posts and check points had the necessary protective materials to protect them from contracting the coronavirus while conducting their operations.
He said while the officials had been provided with temperature guns and face masks, they had also been educated to observe all the safety protocols to prevent them from contracting the disease.PHOTO
ACI Bediako, however appealed for logistics such as motorbikes to enable officials stationed at the various borders to be able to properly man the rough terrains in order to prevent foreigners from entering the country illegally.
He also advised residents in the various border towns and villages to desist from assisting foreign nationals to enter the country through unapproved routes since those who might be carriers of COVID-19 would infect Ghanaians with the disease.
The Bono Region recorded its first incidence of COVID-19 when a 27-year old Togolese who entered the country though Sampa in the company of nine others, tested positive of the diseases.