COVID-19: Nigeria rules out reopening of schools soon

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A file photo of secondary-school-students

By Agency Report

Following the COVID-19 pandemic, the Federal Government has pledged not to endanger children by opening schools.

Minister of State for Education, Emeka Nwajiuba, made this known while fielding questions during the daily briefing by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 pandemic.

It would be recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari had announced a gradual lockdown relaxation in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, Lagos and Ogun States.

But Nwajiuba said there was no date yet for schools in the country to resume.

He also clarified that the West African Examinations Council has not cancelled its external exams as students will still have to go and take those exams when the government was sure to have taken good care of the pupils.

He explained that the Federal Ministry of Education could not foresee or give any date when schools would be resuming in the country.

“The president actually addressed the issue of the opening of the economy gradually. Until that is done, we can’t foresee or immediately tell you when all the schools will be reopened. It will not be proper for us to simply give you a date. It has to be in tandem with these opening terms. We don’t want to put our children at risk. None of these schools can function on their own without the society.

“On the question of children promoting to the next class, those exams will happen when we are satisfied that the children have learnt what is enough for them to move. For those who are in the exit classes of junior basic and senior secondary schools, we are preparing them and will continue to.

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“This will go on until we are sure that they are equipped for the external examinations. The West African Examinations Council has not cancelled their external exams. It was postponed indefinitely. This indefinite nature is so that we can get a definite date. Students will still have to go and take those exams when we are sure that we have taken good care of the pupils.”

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