Education

Reps Fault Presidency On Jan 18 School Resumption, Suggest 3-month Postponement

The House of Representatives has faulted the Federal Government of Nigeria for giving schools the go-ahead to resume on Monday despite the surging cases of COVID-19.

The House said government officials did not consult the relevant committees of the National Assembly, contrary to their claim that all relevant stakeholders were consulted before arriving at the January 18, 2021, resumption date.

It, therefore, demanded postponement of resumption for three months, where necessary safety measures weren’t put in place and compliance with protocols low.

READ ALSO: COVID-19: Nigerian Govt Bans Assemblies, Visiting Days As Schools Resume Monday

Chairman of the House Committee on Basic Education and Services, Prof Julius Ihonvbere, disclosed these in a telephone interview on Saturday.

“They did not consult us; at least in my committee, nobody from the ministry spoke to me. I have been in Abuja. And I am not sure that they spoke to any of my members. They just don’t see us as part of the critical stakeholders,” he said.

Ihonvbere, in a statement he issued in Abuja on Saturday, on behalf of his committee, opposed the Monday resumption date.

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The statement was titled “School resumption: Are we truly prepared?”

It read, “The Committee on Basic Education and Services, House of Representatives, has received with concern the decision of the Federal Government to reopen schools on January 18, 2021.

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“We are particularly concerned that when the infection rates hovered around 500 and under, schools were closed; but now that it hovers well above 1,000 infections daily, schools are being reopened. Why are we rushing to reopen schools without adequate verifiable and sustainable arrangements to protect and secure our children?”
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