Schools Will Remain Closed Till Safety is Guaranteed – FG

The federal government says it is not yet safe for academic activities to resume in schools across the country.

Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, minister of state for education, said this while addressing reporters at the end of the eighth virtual federal executive council meeting, on Wednesday.

The federal government had ordered the closure of schools since March to curb the spread of the virus.

READ MORE: Our Decision On Schools Reopening, 2020 WASSCE Unchanged – FG

Despite demand by the house of representatives for the reopening of schools to allow students write the 2020 West African Senior Secondary School Certificate Examination (WASSCE), Nwajiuba said academic institutions will remain closed till adequate safety is assured.

He said after a review, the ministry discovered that it will be risky for schools to partially resume amid the rising number of COVID-19 cases.

As of Tuesday, Nigeria had recorded 33,616 cases of COVID-19, with 13,792 recoveries and 754 deaths.

READ MORE; WASSCE: We Can’t Make Decision For Private, State Schools – FG

The minister said stakeholders are holding meetings to ensure the right decision is made, adding that the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) is also considering a change of date for 2020 WASSCE.

“We are still meeting with parents over that, we are not confident yet that everywhere is safe, the number of COVID-19 infections from the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) are still very alarming and we have presented this to parents and all stakeholders in the education eco system,” he said.

“We are still meeting with them; in fact, there is a stakeholder meeting slated for Monday next week.

“WAEC on its own part is also negotiating with other West African countries to look at possible shift in date and once they are through with that meeting and hopefully when we are also through with the consultations, if there is any change in the ministry’s position, we will communicate.”

Nwajiuba said the FEC approved N136 million for the procurement of theatre seats and computers for the University of Benin in Edo state.

He said the contract would be funded by the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND).

“We submitted a memo on behalf of the University of Benin, for the procurement and installation of theatre seats and computers for work in the auditorium of the University of Benin,” he said.

“The project is being funded by the 2019 Tertiary Education funds allocated to the school in the sum of N136 million and the contract was approved by FEC as proposed by the University of Benin and they will now proceed with the procurement.”

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