THE Federal Government has warned state governors engaging in accelerated schools reopening plans despite no clear green light from the federal government to that effect.
This was disclosed the Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, during the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 briefing in Abuja yesterday.
The Minister of State for Education, Emeka Nwajiuba in a media address yesterday said that
According to Nwajiuba, the federal government would not hesitate to shut any school reopened without adherence to COVID-19 guidelines as preparations for resumption of primary and secondary schools across the country gather momentum.
Some state governors have announced Monday, September 21, as the resumption date for academic activities.
Report says that the federal government is calling on state governments and private school proprietors to ensure that adequate measures are put in place to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic before the full reopening of schools.
“The federal government would not hesitate to shut any school reopened without adherence to guidelines and protocols provided by the national response.”
Nwajiuba, emphasised that universities need to get clearance from the National Universities Commission (NUC) before reopening.
He however noted that primary and secondary education was within the purview of the state governments and that the right thing must be done to safeguard the lives of the school children before reopening.
“All primary schools up to post-primary schools have the participation of sub-national and at that level, they need to check and meet all the requirements before they open.”
He further explained that at the tertiary level, guidance will also be done in collaboration with the National Universities Commission to ensure satisfactory clearance with their performance with regard to the guideline.
“What we are doing is that we are reducing this whole gamut of the document into some measurable steps towards reopening. What that means is that the governing council of each institution will then review the guideline and benchmark it.
Nwajuba admitted that the states taking steps toward reopening are all in order as expected from what the PTF said last week and in line with guideline.
“They must be guided because in every state we have quality assurance officers that are reporting to the federal ministry of education and we will not hesitate to shut down any place that is not in compliance with guidelines.”
In Kogi State, Governor Mohammed Bello said secondary school students are getting set for the full reopening of schools.
According to him, the state government is on the move to reopen schools in line with the directive by the PTF that states and other stakeholders should prepare for the full reopening of schools.