Three Ghanaians have been shot in Libya following pro and anti-Gaddafi riots in that country, according to the Minister for “Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Alhaji Muhammad Mumuni.
Answering a question that stood in the name of the Minority spokesperson on foreign Affairs, Shirley Ayorkor Botchway as to what plans the ministry had put in place to immediately evacuate Ghanaians living in the oil-rich north African country, Alhaji Mumuni said two of the three victims had been identified and were responding to treatment. They are Solomon Essien and Patrick Kudjo.
Mr. Kudjo has been treated and discharged and Mr. Essien is still on admission in a Tripoli hospital.
He said apart from those people who had been caught in the crossfire and had suffered gunshots wounds, no Ghanaian life had been lost in the upheaval.
Alhaji Mumuni indicated that the nation was facing serious logistical challenges as government was leaving no stone unturned to evacuate about 10,000 Ghanaians in Libya home.
Government, he pointed out, had constituted an evaluation task force comprising the Ministry of foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, the Ministry of Information, National Security Council, Ghana Armed forces, Ghana Police Service, Ghana Immigration Service and the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) to plan and coordinate the evacuation.
Alhaji Mumuni said the original proposal was to use the seaports of Tripoli and Benghazi but the plan had to be discarded because of their inaccessibility to Ghanaian nationals and difficulties of evacuation by sea.
The task force, which had been operating at the Accra International Conference Centre had designated a number of telephone lines to receive calls from concerned relatives for relay to Libya.
The numbers are 0302-787373, 0302-684887, 0302-227201, 0279-430330, 0299005097 and 0299005101.
He said given the spread of Ghanaians residing in various parts of Libya, those able to make it to the borders with Egypt and Tunisia were encouraged to do so.
Accordingly, liaison posts have been set up at these borders by officials from the Ghana embassies in Egypt and Algeria which oversee Tunisia, to receive and process nationals for transfer to Cairo and Tunis from where arrangement would be made to airlift them to Accra at government’s expense.
The Ghanaian Embassy in Libya has also appealed to the Libyan authorities to designate a location where Ghanaians would converge for evacuation.
The Minister disclosed that the Embassy was yet to receive a favourable response from the Libyan government.
Alhaji Mumuni denied reports that the evacuation committee was charging $300 from each evacuee before processing them for home.
He described the allegation as a discredited rumour aimed at sabotaging the evacuation exercise.
The Minister also denied allegations that some Ghanaians were being used as mercenaries to fight for embattled President Muammar Gaddafi to Libya, who is gradually losing his grip on power after controlling the oil-rich Arab country for 42 years.
The Minister said 95 Ghanaians arrived in the country midday yesterday, bringing the total number of evacuees so far to 150.
He stated that four bus-loads of people numbering about 200 are heading for the Libya-Egypt border to be evacuated.
A thousand more are gathered at the Tripoli International Airport to be flown home soon.
Source: Daily Guide
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