No, Nigerian schools won’t reopen on 8 June

A post on the Facebook page Eagle TV Media Nigeria claims the country’s federal government has announced that schools will reopen on 8 June 2020. 

“The Federal Government of Nigeria has announced Monday, June 8, 2020, the official resumption date for Universities, polytechnics, and other schools,” it reads.

It claims “this was disclosed” by Boss Mustapha, the secretary to the government and head of the presidential Covid-19 taskforce. The post shows president Muhammadu Buhari signing a document. 

The claim appears in other Facebook posts. One says schooling will resume on 7 June.

But some Facebook users were having none of it. “This absolutely fake news,” commented one. Another wrote: “There is a road map for the unwinding of the lockdown, and it no no way [sic] mention the date you are propagating.”

Schools closed in March due to Covid-19

On 19 March Nigeria’s education ministry ordered all private and public schools to be shut as part of measures to contain the spread of Covid-19.

The Covid-19 taskforce encourages continued e-learning and visual teaching. The education ministry has arranged for secondary school classes to be held on community radio stations across the country.

‘No resumption date yet’

Guidelines for the gradual easing of the lockdown were issued on 30 April. For the first phase, the taskforce directed that all schools and academic institutions “remain closed till further evaluation”.

Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, minister of state for education, told journalists the date for reopening schools had not been set.

“The president actually addressed the issue of the opening of the economy gradually. Until that is done, we can’t foresee or immediately tell you when all the schools will be reopened,” he told Punch newspaper on 29 April.

“It will not be proper for us to simply give you a date. It has to be in tandem with these opening terms. We don’t want to put our children at risk. None of these schools can function on their own without society.” – Fatima Abubakar


 

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