Some Ghanaian students from Gaziantep University in Türkiye (Turkey) are stranded after a massive earthquake struck the city on Monday, killing about 10,000 people.
According to the students, their attempts to obtain bus tickets from the Ghana-Turkey embassy in order to migrate from the affected area to a safer city, Ankara, have been futile.
The students claimed that instead of getting them the tickets, Ghana’s embassy in that country said it was currently seeking financial clearance for such venture.
The situation has compelled the students to purchase the tickets themselves.
One of the students, Abdullah Rabiu, spoke to Citi News about the problem and said: “What baffles me is that, the Embassy said, we were to purchase the tickets ourselves for a refund [later] with an excuse that a letter must be written for them to get an approval for funds to purchase the tickets for us. Life is really important, so we are looking at how we are going to cope. Our lives are at stake because there are aftershocks. Anything can happen because we are just trying to survive.”
Ghana’s Ambassador to Turkey, Francisca Ashietey-Odunton confirmed to Citi News that all Ghanaian students who are in areas affected by the earthquake are safe and are being catered for.
She revealed that even though a state of emergency has been declared and reaching out to some Ghanaians in those affected areas is tough, her outfit has been informed by the President of the Ghanaian Students in Turkey that all students have been accounted for.
“The worst affected places had Ghanaians and most of them are students. Everybody who has been registered with the mission has been accounted for except Christian Atsu who I can confirm has been found, but he is injured. We are trying to follow up to find out how we can get to him or even talk to him,” she said.
The Ambassador also indicates that tents have been provided for the students temporarily and food items are being distributed to them in the meantime.
“They are providing for them. They have been advised not to go into any building, but the Turkish Authorities have provided tents temporarily for them to be there, and they are being taken care of in terms of food and making sure they are warm. For now, they are there because we cannot go there. But for now, they are fine.”