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Ukraine tensions: Evacuate Ghanaian students, says Haruna Iddrisu

Haruna Iddrisu wants the finance minister to as a matter of urgency make funds available to the foreign affairs ministry for the evacuation of Ghanaian students in Ukraine

Story Highlights
  • Emergency sirens have been sounding in Kyiv since the first explosions in the early hours. Huge traffic jams have built up as residents try to flee the city after Ukraine closed its airspace to civilian flights.
  • Reacting to the development, Ghana’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs urged Ghanaians in Ukraine to seek shelter in their homes or in designated government places of shelter, following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu has called on the government to take urgent steps to evacuate Ghanaian students from Ukraine following Thursday’s invasion by Russia.

Iddrisu wants the finance minister to as a matter of urgency make funds available to the foreign affairs ministry for the evacuation.

Speaking on the floor of the House on Thursday (24 February), the opposition MP said such a move will be a valid demonstration of the government’s commitment to ensure the safety of the over 1000 Ghanaian students in Ukraine.

“I mentioned this matter to the Speaker that I wanted to invoke order 72 to raise a matter of urgent public importance which is to call on the minister of foreign affairs, minister for interior, minister for finance to work together to take urgent steps to ensure the safety of Ghanaian students in Ukraine and to work towards the immediate evacuation of Ghanaian students.

“…Mr Speaker, this we must do to assure the students and their parents that they are Ghanaians and they deserve our support. So, it’s a matter of urgent public importance and I’m indulging you that we raise this matter because the finance minister must make money readily available for the ministry of foreign affairs,” Iddrisu stated.

Prioritise evacuation

Earlier, the National Union of Ghana Students (NUGS) also called on the government to prioritise the evacuation of citizens in Ukraine.

A statement by NUGS stated that “as conflicts escalate within the regions, governments of countries across the world are prioritizing the evacuation of their citizens across the area to forestall harm on their citizens. Some students have currently fled the region, showing growing insecurity and fear amongst students. Some of these students including the Executives of the NUGS chapter in Ukraine have touched down and have reached out to the National Secretariat of NUGS advising that urgent steps be taken to ensure the safety of their colleagues still in the regions.”

Ghanaians in Ukraine call for help

Scores of Ghanaians including students in Ukraine have called on the government to urgently evacuate them back home from the war-hit country.

It comes after Russian forces invaded Ukraine, with missile strikes and explosions reported near major cities and on its military infrastructure.

Speaking to Asaase News on Thursday (24 February), one of the students, Araba Mensah said they are living in fear.

“So, this morning a military airport in my city, which is about 30 to 40 minutes drive away from where I stay was bombed, and as a result of that, it has increased the rate at which people are panicking and they are afraid.

“So, currently we really need the government of Ghana to come to our aid, if they can help evacuate us to our country and if when situations calm down, we can come back, we will be very glad, because that is what we need because staying here is not safe at all,” she said.

Seek shelter

Reacting to the development, Ghana’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs urged Ghanaians in Ukraine to seek shelter in their homes or in designated government places of shelter, following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“The Government of Ghana is gravely concerned about the security and safety of our over 1000 students and other Ghanaians in Ukraine and has asked them to shelter in place in their homes or in government places of shelter as we engage the authorities, our relevant diplomatic missions and our honorary consul on further measures,” it tweeted.

Nicholas Brown

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Nicholas Brown

I am a multi-media journo with Asaase Radio. I tell stories that shape the difficulties of life. Let's talk about anything acting, stage direction and making an impact.

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