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Public, Private Schools Differ Over Reopening Of Schools

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Reopening Of Schools

Public, Private Schools Differ Over Reopening Of Schools

Mixed reactions have continued to trail Monday’s announcement by the federal government to reopen schools for students in junior secondary and senior secondary three.

While some have said that nothing has been put on ground by the federal government to curtail the spread of coronavirus in schools, others say it is a welcome development as students tend to study more when in the classroom and that online study is not effective.

The federal government had on Monday, June 29, 2020, announced the reopening of schools as part of modifications to the COVID-19 lockdown, phase two of which it extended for another 30 days.

The resumption was, however, limited to graduating JSS 3 and SSS 3 students preparing to write their final examinations.

Chairman of the COVID-19 Presidential Task Force (PTF), Boss Mustapha, announced this during briefing by the Task Force in Abuja.

In a telephone conversation with LEADERSHIP, the Advisory Director, White Plain British School, Dr Francis Chukwumah Nwufoh said reopening of schools is a welcome development as online schools were not effective at all.

He said primary school pupils most times do not concentrate during online classes as “you hear them making demands ranging from food, water to going to the toilet.”

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He said they are more concentrated while in class adding that what needs to be done now is improving the hygiene of the classroom environment and social distancing.

“It is a welcome development. We tried online school but it was not effective. Children are not serious. You will be talking to them before you know they will say mummy I want to go to the toilet. They are more serious and concentrated in the classroom. What should be done is seriousness concerning social distance and hygiene of the classroom. Interaction between teachers and students is very important. It is very important that they open the school because if children are not engaged, they might start forgetting what they have learnt,” he said.

Nwufoh further noted that experimental sciences like Physics, Chemistry, Biology and Mathematics need serious physical interaction between students and teachers for more clarity.

Also speaking to Source on the reopening of schools, director of Press, Federal Ministry of Education, Mr Ben Goon said the ministry is currently holding meetings to tie all loosed ends before students can go back to classes.

He said both private and public schools would have to work out the details as it suits them.

He said all schools must be fumigated before resumption, while students will be divided into two for each class and those with boarding facilities will have to space the bunks.

According to Goon, “We have to do fumigation, we have to decongest the bed in the dormitory so that we can space them well. We have to subdivide the classes so that if you have a class of 50, you break it into two. Divide them into two since it is only the examination classes, the final year classes that are resuming.

“Every school will have excess classrooms so that social distancing can be observed. It is the same way we will spit them in the hostels. If the bunks are close, we can leave three bunks in between two people. Fumigation will also have to be done in the hostels. There will also be a notice going to parents on what is expected from them as their children go back to school such as face mask, hand sanitizer and so on. The private sector can also take a cue from that.”

The president of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) on Monday kicked against the reopening of schools by the federal government due to the COVID-19 pandemic currently ravaging the country. ASUU national president, Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi, spoke with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Ota, Ogun State.

According to him, the federal government needs to address the challenges of the education sector before it can talk of reopening schools. Ogunyemi urged th federal government to provide an ideal environment and should take the lead by meeting the conditions spelt out by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) before reopening schools.

“The federal government must lead and show the way 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 individual, but the federal government must take the lead,’’ he said. The ASUU president listed the conditions spelt out by NCDC to include; provision of materials for regular washing of hands, face mask, isolations centres, space for social distancing and hands sanitiser.

Ogunyemi said that many of the schools do not have financial capacities to meet these conditions and requirements for reopening of schools. “It is suicidal to reopen schools now, if the federal government itself could not meet the conditions spelt out by NCDC and World Health Organisation (WHO). The nation will expose the innocent children to risks which is avoidable,” he said.

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FG to Commence Distribution of Free Metres

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free metres

The National Mass Metering Programme (NMMP) will on Friday, October 30, 2020 commence distribution of free electricity meters to Nigerians with simultaneous launch events of the scheme in Kano, Kaduna, Eko and Ikeja DISCO franchise area.

According to media reports locations to receive meters include Bawo Road and environs in Kano metropolis (KEDCO), Governor Road/Tudun Wada in Kaduna (Kaduna Electric), Oshodi Business Unit in Ikeja (Ikeja Electric), and Yaba and Surulere (Eko DISCO).

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Key stakeholders to monitor the launch of the distribution include Kaduna, Kano and Lagos government representatives, the Senate Committee and House Chair on Power as well as representatives of Organised Labour and Civil Society Organisations.

The NMMP is to roll out 6 million free meters for all connections points on grid without meters over the next 18 to 24 months, estimating to impact 30 million consumers nationwide.

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Federal Government Re-affirms Support for Okonjo-Iweala as Director General WTO

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WTO

 

The Federal Government on Thursday said it would stand by former Minister, Dr. Ngozi -Okonjo- Iweala until she emerged Director General, World Trade Organisation (WTO).

A statement issued by spokesperson, Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ferdinand Nwonye said the third and final round of the selection process of the Director-General of the World Trade Organization was concluded on Tuesday, 27th October 2020, and that the result was formally announced on Wednesday, 28th October 2020.

The candidate from Nigeria, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has secured the support of the majority of the member countries but is yet to be declared and returned the winner.

“This is because apart from winning the election, all the 164 Member States of WTO were expected to adopt the winner by consensus, in accordance with the rule of procedure of the WTO,” it said.

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The government said it was important to highlight that Dr Okonjo-Iweala had secured cross-regional backing with only the United States opposing the consensus.

“The ministry stated that a meeting of the General Council of the WTO has been scheduled for 9th November, 2020 for the final decision on the election process.

“Nigeria will continue to engage relevant stakeholders to ensure that the lofty aspiration of her candidate to lead the World Trade Organisation is realized,” it said.

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Plateau begins trial of 300 suspected looters

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Looters

The Plateau State Government on Wednesday begun the prosecution of over 300 suspected looters and arsonists in the state.
They were accused of looting, criminal trespass and inciting public disturbance, among other charges.
The suspects, who had been in military and police detention after they were arrested in different parts of Jos and the Bukuru metropolis between Saturday and Sunday, were moved to the Bassa Local Government Area on Wednesday for arraignment.

The defendants were arraigned one after the other at Jebbu Bassa Area Court before several judges including Justices N S Dashe, Adar Roseline Baraje, and L B Longs as well as Lawal Sulaiman, among others.

In all the cases brought before the judges, the prosecutors from the state Ministry of Justice told the court that the accused persons committed the offences against the state and should be prosecuted according to the law.
The defence counsels, however, pleaded with the court to temper justice with mercy for the accused persons, particularly as they were first offenders.
The defence counsels also pleaded for short sentencing with an option of fine after their clients pleaded guilty to the offences.

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@Africa CDC

The African Union and Africa CDC will virtually rollout the Partnership to Accelerate COVID-19 Testing (PACT) in Africa tomorrow 4 June, 2020 at 11.00 am Eastern Africa Time.

The African Union and Africa CDC will virtually rollout the Partnership to Accelerate COVID-19 Testing (PACT) in Africa tomorrow 4 June, 2020 at 11.00 am Eastern Africa Time.

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"Also found worthy of honour was Bashir Abubakar, an Asst Comptroller-General of Customs, who rejected a bribe of $412,000 per container offered him by drug traffickers seeking to bring 40 containers of Tramadol into Nigeria. A fine example of incorruptibility, worthy of emulation"

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