The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has called on the federal government to halt any intentions of reopening schools.
The National President of the union, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, made this known in a statement on Monday.
According to him, the Federal Government needed to address the challenges of the education sector before it can talk of reopening schools.
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He noted that with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it will be risky for schools to reopen especially since most of the schools do not have financial capacities to meet those conditions and requirements for reopening schools.
Recall that some of the COVID-19 prevention protocols stated by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) include, provision of materials for regular washing of hands, face mask, isolations centres, space for social distancing, and hands sanitiser.
The ASUU president explained that most schools could bare afford running water or even sanitizers. He added that many schools do not have enough spaces to promote physical distancing.
His words, “The Federal Government must lead and show the ways by meeting the conditions for reopening of schools before any school can be allowed to open because COVID-19 pandemic is a health challenge.
“When it comes to public health, it is something that should not be left in the hands of individuals, but the Federal Government must take the lead.”
“It is suicidal to reopen schools now if the Federal Government itself could not meet the conditions spelled out by NCDC and World Health Organisation (WHO).
“The nation will expose the innocent children to risks which is avoidable.”
Ogunyemi said that putting all the requirements needed together, to reopen schools in the country now would run to millions of Naira, which most schools could not afford.
He, therefore, appealed to the Federal Government to provide the necessary funds for the principals and headteachers so that they could provide some of these facilities in their schools.
Also, the ASUU president called on the federal government to make Nigerians know the steps they would take in reopening schools adding that for the government not to tell people their minds was like running away from “our shadow” which would later hunt the country.
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