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FG Makes U-Turn, Says We Never Support School Reopening

The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, said the PTF and by extension, the Federal Government, was never favourably disposed to the January 18 date for reopening of schools.

The minister said, “We sat down, looked at the figures and we took the decision that schools should not open.

“Unfortunately, we have to state this because it is supposed to be a collective decision, but you must understand that the schools we are talking about, the Federal Government has only about 100 out of thousands of schools.

“The schools are under the jurisdiction of states and just as the PTF was unanimous in saying that schools should not open, states were unanimous that schools should open.

“So, we have to compromise and as PTF we shall monitor what is happening on a daily basis. There could be some review again.”

Meanwhile, the PTF has created a special team to implement and monitor safety protocols in the states in the Niger Delta, riverine communities and along the waterways in the country.

The National Coordinator of the PTF, Dr Sani Aliyu, at the media briefing said the Special Task Team on COVID-19 would be led by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Niger Delta Affairs, Ita Enang.

Aliyu, who was represented by the National Incident Manager, PTF, Dr Muktar Mohammed, also said the team would be mobilised by the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and the Nigerian Shippers’ Council.

Also, the NCDC called on private laboratories to support the country’s testing on coronavirus.

The NCDC Director-General, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, lamented that Nigeria unlike other countries, placed more burden on the public laboratories.

He stated, “In Nigeria, 30 percent of the over 1million tests that have been done was by the private sector. The public sector still bears the burden of  testing.”

He said a framework had  been developed for the  private sector participation, and promised to send a team of supporters for activation of any private laboratory in any part of the country.

The Punch

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