Some 141 Ghanaian students stranded in Benin on Saturday arrived in the country through the Aflao Border in the Ketu South Municipality of the Volta region.
The students, 17 males and 124 females from three tertiary institutions in the country, University of Ghana (UG), Legon, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) and Ghana Institute of Languages (GIA) left Ghana in August last year for a programme in French Language at Centre Beninois des Langues Etrangeres (CEBELAE) in the Republic of Benin.
Rev. Johnson Avuletey, the Deputy Volta Regional Minister who led government delegation including; officials from National, Regional and Municipal Security agencies, Saturday welcomed the students back home on behalf of the President.
He said the country had put in place mechanisms to ensure their safety and asked them to strictly adhere to enhanced personal hygiene and social distancing protocols to stay safe and help contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country.
Some students who spoke to the Ghana News Agency (GNA) said they felt good to be back in their home country after staying away for about a year.
Ms Solace Aseda Asare of UG said, “I’m excited to be back in Ghana though there's COVID-19, and we’re not allowed to do things as before, I miss home because I’ve been away since August 31, 2019 for the year abroad programme.
“I’m happy to be home again. We first heard of the virus in the country in March, but because our programme was ongoing at the time, we didn’t feel the border closure, but when it ended in May, we felt its impact because we couldn’t return. It is good government made this special arrangement for us to come back home to our families,” Mr Francis Anderson of GIA said.
The returnees while at the border were each given few face masks and alcohol-based hand sanitisers, and asked to replace the face mask with which they travelled with the new ones.
They were also made to wash their hands, had their body temperatures checked and passports scanned before finally continuing their journey to the Ghanaman Soccer Centre of Excellence, Prampram for the two weeks mandatory quarantine.