The rumoured news flying around the world wide web that the Federal Government would reopen schools in the next fourteen days has been debunked by the Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba.
The Minister who spoke on Thursday, May 21 at the daily briefing of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 noted that it is true that the government is looking at reopening schools but ‘not in the next two weeks as speculated’.
According to Nwajiuba, no doubt schools would be reopened soon but until they are properly resourced.
The minister further reiterates that no exact date for the resumption has been announced by the government as been rumoured around.
He said, “We all are seriously interested in reopening and I believe we will reopen soon. But I can’t confirm what your children said that we will reopen in two weeks. The issue around reopening has nothing to do with the availability of the schools or not. It has to do with national governance. The idea of shutting down the schools has nothing to do with the schools per see.”
“You heard the chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, the SGF, keep saying it is a national response. It is a single national response and everything we do flows from that. When they determine, I’m sure you have seen all the experts here, that there is the measure of safety to which we can expose our children, we will gladly do that. We are watching and we are working with all bodies within and outside the country.”
Nwajiuba added, “The five countries of West African Examination Council (WAEC) are meeting and I just came out of a meeting with African Union (AU) Ministers of Education, everybody is concerned as you are. We hope to reopen very soon. This morning, I met with the Ministry of Science and Technology. We are looking at putting a system in place that can disinfect every child as he goes into a school and disinfects him as he goes out.”
“If we resource our schools properly we can begin to reopen. But we must be able to ensure that the children go in safe and come out safe and not become a conduit for further infection in society,” Nwajiuba reiterated.
Meanwhile, in another development, Banks and offices have been called to start adjusting their structure as the federal government considers lifting restrictions.
The call was made on Thursday during the presidential task force daily briefing by the National Coordinator of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, Sani Aliyu.