Stakeholder warns against mass COVID-19 infection with schools reopening
An educationist, Nehemiah Obuorah has warned that reopening schools for basic and secondary school students preparing for exams may further increase COVID-19 infections.
Obuorah who is the proprietor of the Netherlands International Schools said the Federal Government’s decision to re-open basic schools for prospective candidates for the common entrance examination, as well as exiting junior and secondary school students is not in good faith.
Instead of basic and secondary schools, the educationist said re-opening of tertiary institutions should be considered as doing so would remove the fear and stigma associated with the pandemic.”
The administrator observed that the universities have both the botanical and herbal gardens and trees which can create not only higher oxygen in the university environment required to provide immunity for the virus.
He pointed out that students in higher institutions of learning have developed sanitisers and water dispensers, stressing that, if they are allowed to return to the schools, they would carry out further studies on finding preventive and curative drugs for COVID-19
He said, “The students in higher institutions of learning if allowed to return to school, would fumigate their environment themselves and maintain personal and environmental hygiene. They could easily go into the laboratories to research for drugs needed to contain the ravaging COVID-19 and help the economy to rebound.
“The lecturers can use their students to see what they can do and what studies can be researched to develop drug for use to cure the disease, minding strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
“By the time the tertiary institutions are reopened, the economy will open up as a lot of hospitals would be opened. The tertiary institutions will reactivate macro and micro economies of this nation because of the multiplier effect in the economy and movement of fund.”
Obuorah revealed that, after the return of students in tertiary institutions, those in the junior basic class preparing for the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) to prepare them for entry into SS1 while those in the basic class will be prepared to take their WAEC/NECO/GCE examinations respectively and enter the higher institutions.
While lamenting the closure of schools occasioned by COVID-19 pandemic, they called on the government to come to the aid of the teachers especially those in the private schools who are worst hit and currently being owed three months salary.
He said providing them with palliatives and settling the arrears of salary would go a long way in restoring their badly affected social life.