Sales of fresh fish in Kenya have risen as imports from China have dropped amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Sellers in Dunga Beach on the shores of Lake Victoria report a jump in trade of about 40% over two weeks.
“The fishermen are really now smiling at the Lake Victoria region because we are receiving more visitors. Dunga is really crowded with a lot of the residents of Kisumu coming to buy the fresh fish because people fear the Chinese boxed fish due to the coronavirus,” says Maurice Misodhi, a fisherman and leader at the Dunga Beach Management Unit.
Local fish costs about twice as frozen fish from China, of which Kenya imported more than $23m (£19m) worth in 2018.
Chinese fish used to make up about 50% of the market but this has fallen since imports stopped in November and the virus outbreak later took hold.
Before the coronavirus outbreak, local fishermen complained that cheap imports harmed local trade so much that they often resorted to eating their catch themselves or giving much of it away.
But the scarcity of Chinese fish isn’t good news for everyone. Caroline Ochieng, a fish seller says she is struggling to make a decent profit because Chinese fish is cheaper than local lake fish.
“That is the reason we want the China fish to be in supply as well as that from our own lake – so that as we do business we don’t feel the burden.”
There are worries that local fishermen won’t be able to keep up with new demand for fresh fish. But for now at least, they are making the most of the surge in trade.
The Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi has been in the news since the outbreak of COVID 19 for various reasons.
The university was the first to begin the mass production of sanitizes to augment availability in the face of sharp price hikes. One of the University’s students startup, FastRx, an online pharmacy that serves students on campus and its environs has become the first to develop a self checker in Africa as the pharmaceutical industry as well as Tech companies scramble to produce self checkers and testers.
The Co-Founder of the startup, William Abrefa spoke to Campus360 CEO, Adivor Peter Agbesi about the operations of the company and the new COVID-19 Checker they just developed called Abbey
William said “FastRx is a health tech startup that leverages technology to solve pressing challenges in the heath care system in Ghana. FastRx has two main services it provide to its customers; FastRx HealthCard and FastRx Logistics.
FastRx healthCard provides quality and affordable healthcare to low and middle class people regardless of their inability to pay up front. Our logistics services enable pharmacies to deliver prescriptions to their customers right in the comfort of their homes or offices.”William Abrefa Explains How The Checker Works;
Abbey is a COVID-19 self-checker bot developed to enable individuals quickly assess the possibility of being infected with the virus and also make informed decisions about seeking medical assistance . The goal is to reduce the burden on health officials from tracking people who are showing symptoms that could be related to COVID-19 or other serious cold and flu conditions at medical facilities , help people better understand the severity of their symptoms and educate the public on Coronavirus, its symptoms and preventive measures.
When the bot is launched, it will ask you a series of questions which aim to determine if the symptoms you are experiencing mean you should seek immediate medical help.”
Reflections Of A Philanthropist By: Ophelia Quainoo || Director & CEO Ophelia Quainoo Global Foundation, Houston, Texas – USA
We are not in ordinary times and everybody is trying hard to find refuge till this storm of destruction that is currently crippling the world passes by. Individuals are making plans to be safe and governments are putting measures in place to save situations. Humanity is just on a cry for the earliest redemption – an end to these dark days. Generally, the uncertainty about the future of humanity is growing and for those on the margins, the picture is that of a hopeless one.
This is not just an account of my thoughts on how the Covid-19 pandemic with all its offshoot predicaments are breaking down the less privileged of our society, it is but largely a reflection on my sleepless nights anytime I try to think about the streets.
Everybody is trying to wash and sanitize his/her hands, change his/her dresses as often as possible, follow all the preventive measures, stay calm and focused and stay at home. Here brings to light the questions; What about the homeless? What about the street child? What about people who sincerely do not have any help in these times? Who cares about them? To whom shall they go for support in these difficult times? What will the child who depends on the stranger and traveler to get a dime for bread do, now that there is lockdown or restriction on movements?
To an undeniable degree, the streets as we know is a home to millions if not a billion of the world’s population. Every country or city have its own share of how the streets serve as home to the less privileged. Even before these times that we are all under the threat of the deadly virus, Covid-19, there has always been a call to individuals, governments, religious and non-profit organizations and corporate bodies to turn helping hands to the less privileged in our societies especially on our streets. Though a lot has been done, there is still more to do; a lot more than ever, especially in these difficult times of the world.
Society as a whole bears a burden of responsibility to help the homeless especially in these times. This is because like the very profound African philosophy of family-hood known as the Ubuntu philosophy, the homeless or street-dwellers are there because we are. Yes, Ubuntu tells us that “I am because we are” and or “we are because I am” and so how can one person be happy if the others are not? For we are people who believe in the universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity. Thus, how can we be safe and secured and happy away from the bows and arrows of the deadly pandemic if others who live on the street are not? No. this is not the spirit of our connectedness.
Aside the reason of the universal bond of sharing that should push us to turn a look at the less privileged on our streets in these moments, a sense of pity for the poor and homeless should touch us. We must remember that not all who end up homeless – on the streets are responsible for their predicaments. Often times, society itself is to be blamed for their plight and as such in moments like these, society must offer a helping hand. In her book, “You Can’t Keep a Good Woman Down”, Alice Walker (1944 – ) wrote, “Not everyone’s life is what they make it. Some people’s life is what other people make it.” This is the story of some of those who live on our streets, for some ended up there because of other people or the society. Their life on the street is not what they wanted, it is as a result of how others ruined it for them. For instance, an orphan who runs to the street to find comfort and refuge away from the harsh treatments by family members cannot be blamed for becoming a street child. This sense of pity must strike us all to support the less privileged on our streets in this hard time.
We have all realized that there are no exceptions with the virus so things need to change for when you are in a dark place, it is always right to keep the lights on. The world is dark now especially for the homeless as a prime measure to fight the virus is the “stay home” module. This brings to bare the question of where the homeless will be in this times of lockdowns around major cities of the world that are highly threatened by this pandemic. What is very human to do now is to come together in these times of crisis and support the less privileged on the streets. Prior to this pandemic, few NGOs and individuals step in to feed or support these street-dwellers and as good as it is we must do more of it in this times.
Our streets are now empty and whose hand will the street child beggar hold to get a dime for bread? But before I ask where from this plague that leaves us no comfort, no families, no freedom and food, I want to tell you what we can do to save others as we save ourselves. It is better to die doing good than do live in evil. We cannot but to extend our hands to the less privileged now. As an activist, I say more needs to be done to reduce the risks for those living on our streets be it in terms of their contact with the virus or their survival in these had times of partial, complete or possible lockdowns. This pandemic is a loud call on us to shelter and house homeless people in a safer and cleaner place. As major streets across several cities in the world adjust to the period of closed doors, community support of the less privileged particularly street children is needed more than ever. Governments must come out with new policies or initiatives that will aid the living of the homeless and the helpless. Religious bodies must take up their call to charity and return to the root of humanity and spirituality which is love for the less privileged. Corporate bodies, non-governmental organizations and individuals must come out to do what is needful in making life bearable for the poor and needy. This is the time for charity based organizations to come out together to work to reach out to the poor and needy on our streets.
This is not just my concern about the streets, it is my call to all to understand the times and turn a helping hand to the poor and needy on our streets. This is because, across these empty streets, tears are the poor man’s drinking water, bitter is the taste of the homeless child, lost are the hopes of the street beggar, and ceaseless are their sleepless nights. Scary enough a situation it is, the land yonder the gutters where they sleep are becoming burial grounds. Therefore, they now need your help more than ever!
ARTICLE BY: OPHELIA QUAINOO DIRECTOR & CEO OPHELIA QUAINOO GLOBAL FOUNDATION HOUSTON, TEXAS – USA
The President of the National Union of Ghanaian Students “NUGS”-Ghana President Isaac Jay Hyde has addressed its members with a Facebook post on distribution of the COVID-19-NUGS intervention ” food & goods bank”
ADDRESS BY NUGS PRESIDENT, LEADER ISAAC JAY HYDE, ON THE DISTRIBUTION OF THE COVID19-NUGS INTERVENTION ” FOOD & GOODS BANK” ON 30TH MARCH 2020.
*Distribution of limited recharge cards to students for online lectures effective today, Monday, 30th March, 2020. Universities who have made provisions for their students are exempts; Whereas Distribution of Food items to begin Thursday, 2nd April , 2020:*
Thank you and good afternoon to the media and colleagues who we may be reaching across the nation, I’ll begin with the point.
As part of ways to reduce the possible drastic implications of the partial lockdown announced by President Akufo-Addo yesterday, the student movement resolved in its National Executive Council ( NEC ) to step in for students and households who may be vulnerable on distance learning and what to eat within this two weeks period.
Ladies and Gentlemen, we have come through with 2 ways, and effective Monday 30th March, here is the roadmap that the newly created Covid19-NUGS Task Force will follow in carrying out this intervention :
*1. Giving away of LIMITED recharge call cards to students to serve as data for online lectures with exempt of Universities who have made provisions for their students:*
Following directives by the president to close down schools, in view of containing the spread of covid19, universities are required to enroll distance learning where students are required to go online for their lecturers.
NUGS have however taken notice of some challenges posed by digital divide since these two weeks of operation of this system. Many students of some Universities have complained of data, and should this continue , the purpose for the e-learning directive ie connecting everyone for academic purposes, will be defeated.
In our little way, NUGS responds to this general challenge especially in the face of the lockdown.
*As part of the Covid 19-NUGS intervention, we shall be giving out LIMITED recharge cards to affected areas EFFECTIVE TODAY, MONDAY, 30TH MARCH 2020.*
Students in areas under lockdown and *those whose universities HAVEN’T made provisions for online data should* WhatsApp the ff number(s) to ask for credit for data for online lectures.
*Steps to access and exemptions:*
a. *WhatsApp this number to make your credit request – 023 923 4125*
b. Students will be required to show online lecture schedules as well as student ID, before credits are issued out.
c.Also NUGS has data on some universities who have given their students some bundles for such purposes, hence only students outside such brackets of universities, will be prioritized.
b. Please be reminded the cards are LIMITED.
Once again, we advise colleague students to eschew any form of corruption in accessing this humanitarian gesture.
*2. The creation and Distribution of a Food & Goods Bank begins on Thurday, 2nd April, 2020*
As of today, various organizations are still aiding the Union to stock the 4 storage houses ( 1 physical and 3 virtual ) in areas to be affected by the lockdown.
The office of NUGS in Accra will serve students and households in Accra, Kasoa and Tema. On the other hand, there’re 3 mini stations in Kuamsi to attend to our brothers and sisters in these environs.
Consequently, students in these cities will be required to access this facility by calling from *THURSDAY 3rd APRIL, 2020*. You will be required to follow simple laid down process to access any food items subject to their availability in the food and goods banks.
*As emphasized above, the exercise will begin from Thursday 2nd April after NUGS finalizes its current talks with various designated ministries and is seeking more guided partnership.* *By Thursday also, considerable orders would have been reached, and students may have exhausted what may be available home at the onset of the lockdown. Services will run from 12pm to 5pm each day from Thursday but these operational times will be subject to security advise by designated minsitry.*
*Steps to access:*
Numbers to call will be announced subsequently when delivery is to begin.
Once again, students are advised to be truthful to having germane conditions for which they should be helped.
Distinguished Media, Ladies and Gentlemen, the Union wishes to use this opportunity to seek for more support to sustain this drive even beyond the 2 weeks lockdown if the situation doesnt improve. The conditions surrounding covid19 pandemic have become so volatile and unpredictable that we as student movement ought to prepare for the worst. We therefore appeal to citizens, organizations and philanthropists to come through to support us on this intervention. As I said in media encounters earlier, we discourage cash donations. Hence , donors should contact the *Campaign Coordinator Nana Akua Afriyie Busia on 0501148730* to access a shortcode to shop into the Food & Goods Bank. We humbly count on your support for our students in these times!
We use your medium again to appeal to our colleagues to go by the safety steps of washing hands with soap regularly and under running water, avoiding close contacts with people in these days, among others.
We at NUGS are of the firm belief that this two-week lockdown is a critical decider in our nation’s fight against corona virus, and we ought to be combative about it. So as much as possible, #StayHome.
The world has survived similar plagues, we can and surely will survive this too, but with you alive!
Aluta Continua! Aluta Contiua. I thank you for your attention.