COVID-19: FG to check Jan 18 college resumption date

The Federal Government on Monday said it would review the January 18 earlier date fixed for resumption of schools across Nigeria.

It attributed the decision to the second wave of COVID-19 currently ravaging the country.

The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, disclosed this while answering questions during a press briefing by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 in Abuja.

Adamu said, “It (January 18 date of school reopening) is not sacrosanct. When we decided on that date it was just a target towards what we were working on. Of course, we are keeping it in view and looking at what is happening in society, and then it is supposed to be subject to constant review.

“Even today (Monday) at the PTF meeting, we looked at the rising figures and thought about if we should probably take another look at it. On the January 18 resumption, we are reviewing it, we are going to review it. At the PTF meeting today (Monday) we considered it and tomorrow (today, Tuesday), the Ministry is going to take it up.”

Branches of the Academic Staff Union of Universities had on Sunday assessed COVID-19 protocols in the universities and said the institutions were not ready for safe reopening.

The chapters of the union, in separate interviews with The PUNCH, commented on the directive of the  National Universities Commission that universities could resume on January 18, but must adhere to COVID-19 protocols in hostels and lecture halls.

ASUU said although its members were ready to start work, the government had not put measures in place for the safe reopening of the schools.

ASUU’s concern came amid coronavirus cases and deaths, which rose to 99,063 and 1,350  respectively on Saturday.

The union Chairman at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Osun State, Dr Adeola Egbedokun, in an interview with one of our correspondents, said classroom and hostel situations in universities did not in any way confirm with  COVID-19 protocols.

Egbedokun further said no preparations had been made so far for the safe re-opening of the universities and urged parents to insist on safety before re-opening.

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