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Updated: PTF okays Jan 18 resumption date as FG gives condition for fresh lockdown

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Resumption

Oba Darasimi

Presidential Task Force, PTF on COVID-19 has okayed the January 18 resumption date for schools across the country just as it hinted the nation faces a fresh lockdown if the number of confirmed cases keeps increasing.

National Coordinator of the PTF on COVID-19, Dr Sani Aliyu, during a television programme on Tuesday said that the resumption date for schools across the nation will be on January 18.

“As regards schools, I just want to make a clarification, what the minister said yesterday was that they were going to review, he didn’t say that they were going to change the date. He said they will review the situation and let the nation know.

“So, for the moment, it is still 18th January until the ministry of education comes back either with an alternative date or reconfirm that,” he said.

 

He also said that the compliance level of Nigerians will determine whether a fresh lockdown will be imposed, amid the second wave of the pandemic. Aliyu insisted that no decision has been made on a fresh lockdown.

“The behaviour of the public when it comes to these rules matters. We have countries abroad that have very strict non-pharmaceutical intervention measures and everybody follows it.

“The flights are coming in, schools are open, churches are open, and they don’t have COVID-19 problems because everybody observes the rules. We definitely don’t want a lockdown and because we don’t want to lock down, we need to make sure we do everything we can to prevent ourselves from reaching that state where the government will have to take action,” the PTF coordinator said.

The Federal Government ordered a lockdown in March 2020 in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja, Lagos and Ogun States for over five weeks during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Last week, the federal government admitted it would have no choice than to impose a fresh lockdown in the country, if the number of COVID-19 infections continues to spike.

Meanwhile, the minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu has outlined Covid-19 protocols that must be adhered to by parents and institutions on resumption. See guidelines below

i. Compulsory wearing of facemasks by all students, teachers and workers in all schools
(ii) Temperature checks and hand washing facilities at strategic locations in all schools
(iii) Ensuring constant supply of water and sanitizers
(iv) Enforcement of maintenance of social distancing and suspension of large gatherings such as assembly and visiting days.
(v) Avoiding overcrowding, including limitations in class sizes and hostel occupancy
(vi) Availability of functional health clinics with facilities for isolation and transportation of suspected cases to medical facilities
(vii) Adherence to all other non-pharmaceutical protocols, restrictions and containment measures as may be prescribed/ approved by the PTF from time to time.

These measures which are to ensure safe reopening of schools for academic activities will be subject to constant review as we urge teachers, school administrators and other stakeholders to ensure strict compliance.

 

 

 

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