We can hear bombings from outside our campus, we’re now hiding in bunkers – Ghanaian student in Ukraine:
According to a Ghanaian student living there, the tension in Ukraine has escalated due to attacks by Russia.
Joseph Yankson, a Master’s student at the Sumy National Agrarian University, noted that for the past 12 hours, they have heard sporadic bomb blasts around the tertiary institution.
According to him one Ghanaian student in Ukraine, the only shelter present is a bunker in the university which students have sought refuge in after being evacuated on Thursday at 5 am.
However, speaking to state-broadcaster GBC on Friday, Joseph noted that the over 1000 students seeking refuge in the facility are scared for their lives as the university is close to a military base.
International media outlets have reported that Russia is targeting military bases in Ukraine.
“We are grateful for life as of now. It has not been a good ordeal for the past 12 hours, if I may say. We have had a very bad experience. There have been several bombardments in my city. For the past 24hours, a lot of things have changed. There is a military base just right across from my university.”
“So, there has been a lot of bombardment right in front of my university. Throughout the night, we have been locked out in the university bunkers. I could hear a lot of gunshots in the background. You know the Russians are targeting the military basement, and there is a military base just a 100metres away from my school. About a minute to two minutes walk.”
He indicated that the bunkers are not comfortable, but “we are not seeking comfort at this moment.”
“It is not comfortable here, but we just want to survive in the meantime. It has been very cold in here. But we are still grateful we have been able to escape one night. It is getting terrifying by the minute. Every second, you hear gunshots. The gunshots keep sounding loud. We get scared. We don’t know where to seek shelter again apart from here.”
Due to the growing tension, Joseph stated that students have been unable to rest or have a good sleep.
He revealed that they are given about two hours to go into the hostels to find something to eat and return immediately because the attacks could take place at any time.
According to Joseph, ATM cards have been left ineffectual as the authorities have withdrawn all monies in the ATMs.
His revelation of the current happenings in Ukraine comes when plans have been made to evacuate Ghanaian students in Ukraine to Poland for safety.
The President of the National Union of Ghana Students (NUGS) in Ternopil City, Richard Ofori, said Ghanaian students in the region, numbering about 250, are expected to be safely evacuated by Tuesday.
“Buses have been booked for tomorrow (Saturday) and Tuesday to transport students to Poland, about 200 to 250 Ghanaian students. We had to make the decision ourselves,” Richard said.
Meanwhile, government says it is engaging Ukrainian authorities to ensure the safety of Ghanaian student in Ukraine present. According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, government is gravely concerned about the security and safety of Ghanaian student in Ukraine following reports of tensions and violent clashes.
Government has, in the meantime, asked over 1,000 students and other Ghanaians to seek help at government places of shelter.
Also, in Parliament on Thursday, Deputy Majority leader and Minority Leader, Alexander Afenyo-Markin, and Haruna Iddrisu, respectively, have urged government to take the necessary steps to save Ghanaians in Ukraine.
The Minority Leader has demanded that the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, must make money readily available to the Foreign Affairs Minister, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has launched an unprecedented attack on Ukraine. The move comes after Putin ordered troops into two pro-Russian, breakaway regions in eastern Ukraine on Monday.
There have been multiple reports of explosions, bombings, and Russian Military vehicles entering Ukraine from various parts of the border with Russia, with a growing number of casualties being counted on both sides.