The Federal Government of Nigeria has said that schools will reopen soon. Minister of State for Education, Emeka Nwajiuba made this public at the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 in Abuja on Monday.
Speaking with newsmen and the public at the briefing, he made known that the federal government will reopen schools as soon as the interstate lockdown has been lifted as this will enable effective running of schools and its bodies.
Nwajiuba is of the opinion that the schools can not run effectively if the interstate lockdown is still effective as several students who school outside their place of abode may not have the access to their institutions due to state border closures.
Speaking on the likely implication of opening the schools to the students, he said many nations have opened their schools and the result is not what one wishes. Some have recorded a spike in the pandemic cases over time and Nigeria is not praying for such.
“Schools will reopen but we want to open when it is safe to do so. We have heard about neighbouring countries that opened and shut. We have heard about cases spiking with children getting into school. Of all the things I will like to do, I will not like to experiment with your children”, Nwajiuba said.
“We want a situation where once we are sure it is safe, we can then take them into school.
He shared his meeting with the West African Examination Council (WAEC) and the National Business and Technical Examination Board (NABTEB) where he had a direct feel of school operators and staffs as the pandemic has really affected the school calendar and other things.
“I have just finished a meeting with the representatives of WAEC and NABTEB and I understand how that worries our parents at the moment and how anxious our children are to know what next.
“As soon as those in charge of the blockade lift it because there is no way we can open our schools if teachers can’t come. So, we are looking at somewhere after the interstate lockdown is lifted. Because we will need that kind of openness for the children to move.”
The Federal Government had in March shut all schools in the country as part of measures to contain the spread of the coronavirus pandemic in the nation.