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Some Ghanaians living in Italy, one of the countries in Europe worst affected by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), say they are living in trying moments.
They said for now, faith in God and being extremely cautious remained their only hope as efforts were made to find a cure for the disease, which was claiming the lives of hundreds of people in that country daily.
They, therefore, advised their compatriots back home in Ghana to adhere to all the precautionary protocols to avoid contracting the disease, as was being witnessed in many European countries whose citizens initially took things for granted.
At the moment, Italy has overtaken China as the epicenter of the pandemic.
Speaking to the Daily Graphic last Monday from his base in Bergamo, Italy, Nana Yaw Badu Duku said he had been stressed by the lockdown.
“Social life is grounded in Italy. We are in terrible times but we believe that by the grace of God a way will be found out of the difficulties,” he said.
Nana Duku, who is the Nkosuohene of the Goaso Traditional Area, said about two weeks ago, the authorities in Bergamo asked all shops to close, with the exception of those that sold groceries, and the streets were deserted.
“They gave emergency numbers for people to call when they are sick for medical teams to come to their attention,” he said.
“Everybody is indoors. If you want to go out, you have to secure authorisation from post offices. Anyone who contravenes the law could go to jail,” he added.
On how he fed himself in the rather difficult situation, he said: “I go out to the groceries to buy food.”
Ghana and Inter Milan football star, Kwadwo Asamoah, also warned Ghanaians about the devastating effects of the disease.
According to him, Italy was currently overwhelmed and the authorities had now turned to God for answers, as the number of deaths continued to rise.
In an interview with an Accra-based radio station, Peace FM, Mr Asamoah said: “The condition in Italy now has worsened and I say it’s not good. I am doing well, but the conditions here are very bad. For now, we can’t go anywhere. All training programmes have been cancelled. Everything has been shut down here in Milan.
“It hasn’t been easy. We didn’t take this thing seriously in the beginning. People were still going about their daily activities and that is why the virus has really spread that fast.”
He said he got scared when news broke that some Juventus players had contracted the disease.
“So far, no Inter Milan player has contracted the disease. It’s worrying to know some players have contracted the virus, especially Juventus players, because they were the last team we played against before the break.
“Even when you have a normal cough, you get scared and think you have the virus,” he said.
Mr Asamoah, therefore, entreated Ghanaians “to take this virus seriously. They should abstain from social gatherings at this point. They should follow the instructions given out by doctors and government officials”.
Another Ghanaian international, Emmanuel Agyemang-Badu, who plays for Hellas Verona on loan from Udinese in Italy, also said: “It’s scary living in Italy now. It’s like every minute someone dies. The health facilities have been overstretched and now people with other health conditions are not a priority. But they are in this situation because people took things for granted.”
Another Ghanaian resident in Verona said: “For some of us, we are holding on to our faith and being extremely careful,
even at home. We don’t allow anyone into our homes for now.”
So far, one Ghanaian has died of the disease.
There are about 60,000 Ghanaians living legally in Italy.
Source: Ghana News