Coronavirus: Why We Won’t Shut Down Schools

March 23, 2020
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coronavirus

The announcement by the Ministry of Health, ordering that all state schools be closed down due to the novel coronavirus has been disobeyed by the Ministry of Education in Cross River state.

Dr Betta Edu, the Commissioner for Health, has in a press statement, ordered the closure of all schools and banned every public gathering that has over 100 people including political rally.

According to Dr Edu, the order was in obedience to the directives from the Federal Government, “This is to inform the General Public that due to the directives of the Federal Government of Nigeria to ensure that all modalities are put in place to prevent/manage spread of the COVID-19 global pandemic in Nigeria, all gatherings/events involving more than hundred (100) persons in a particular place at a particular time should be avoided.

As such, political parties should avoid big rallies while MDAs and organizations should avoid large social events, all Public and Private Nursery, Primary, Secondary Schools and tertiary institutions are by this notice advised to close down all academic activities on or before the 27th day of March, 2020,” the Commissioner stated.

But Commissioner for Education, Dr Godwin Amanke in a statement issued on Monday and made available to newsmen and enitled: ‘COVID-19 Pandemic and the closure in Cross River State’ expressed displeasure over the announcement of CLOSURE of schools in the state by the Commissioner for Health

“The Cross River State Ministry of Education wishes to clear the air over the COVID-19 pandemic and academic activities in schools under its control across the State.

“The Ministry of Education hereby states in very clear terms that we will not be shutting down our schools, both public and private, these include CRUTECH, College of Education, Akamkpa, Institute of Technology and Management Ugep and College of Health Technology, Calabar.

“To avoid disrupting the academic calendar of schools under our controls in the state have already began examination in earnest and should be concluding same in a matter of weeks.

“The Ministry has, however, concluded arrangements with Medical experts from the University of calabar Teaching Hospital and the General Hospital, Calabar and other relevant professionals to immediately embark on public education about the COVID-19 pandemic in the various schools and colleges across the state,” he stated.

Dr Amanke said that his Ministry join hands with Nigerians across the country in the effort to curtail the spread of the pandemic, but wish to warn that raising false alarms and taking pre-competitive actions will only help to agitate the people of the state and lead to undue panic.

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