Some stakeholders in the education sector have commended the efforts of the Oyo State government in ensuring safe environment for reopening schools for graduating classes in the state.
They gave their commendations in separate interviews with News Agency of Nigeria in Ibadan on Friday.
NAN recalled that primary six pupils, JSS III and SSS III students resumed revision classes towards their examinations on July 6.
Mr Kayode Adeyemi, the President, National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS) Oyo State, said that it had been a very good development from all the reports available to the union.
“Everybody complied with the COVID-19 safety protocols and there has not been any issue whatsoever concerning the safety of the children.
“From the record of the inspection team in Oyo State it is obvious that reopening of schools has not added to the infection rate and there has not been any report so far on it.
“The students and teachers are happy to be back in school and everybody is on their beat awaiting all the exams and we trust God that the remaining arms will be opened soon,” Adeyemi said.
Also, Mr Tojuade Adedoyin, the state Chairman of Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) said that teachers were gradually adjusting to the situation.
“The various headmasters and principals have provided all the necessary materials and our students and pupils are happy to be back in school.
“To a certain extent we are happy with the government’s provision, though there is room for improvement,” he said
Adedoyin said that the union was liaising with the government on all other areas it thinks that the government should come in and improve.
“There are some schools where they don’t have the thermometer to measure the temperature of students and staff.
“So if the government can provide the thermometers or the running grants for the second term; the school managers will have the funds to fall back on to buy whatever they need for the running of the school,” he noted.
Prof. Clement Kolawole, the Chairman, School Governing Board of Estate High School, Bashorun, said that the system was stabilising and overcoming initial challenges.
“I found that the government took a good decision to reopen school for the category of those who have resumed now, although teachers are working harder and are making sacrifices to see that the reopening works, they deserve to be commended for their dedication,” Kolawole said.
Prof. Adams Onuka, an education evaluation expert, said that the government had done the needful by asking the graduating class to resume revision classes.
“To me, it’s a well-thought decision by the various governments; national and sub-national, it’s good that for a start, it has been restricted to the graduating classes,” he said.
Onuka said the decision would definitely boost students’ morale and lower their anxiety which could adversely affect those with high anxiety quotient and ultimately their performance.
He, however, urged parents and their wards to ensure that they do everything that can assure their safety of their children and protect them from contracting the pandemic or prevent them from spreading them.
“Parents and students must demonstrate the God-fearing spirit and have the interest of others at heart; that way nobody will become an agent of spreading the sickness,” Onuka said.
Prof. Oyesoji Aremu of the Department Guidance and Counselling, University of Ibadan, also said that school resumption of transition classes amid spikes of COVID-19 looks somehow scary.
“Nevertheless, management of classes and health of students and teachers are very important.
“While students may not be too much at risk, the teachers may not be too lucky if adequate provisions are not made by the government and leadership of the schools.
“While private schools may not be too much affected at least the standard ones among them, the same may not be said about some public schools begging for infrastructural attention long before the advent of the coronavirus pandemic,” Aremu said.
He said the situation was a wake-up call for government and schools’ proprietors and other stakeholders to, as a matter of importance and urgency, give hygiene a place it deserves in teaching and learning.
Aremu said the success or otherwise of school opening would determine whether or not other students and pupils would resume schooling on time.
“It means, COVID-19 protocols must be well entrenched in the course of teaching and learning, government officials and other stakeholders would therefore ensure strict compliance,” he said.
Edited By: Shittu Obassa/Kayode Olaitan (NAN)
COVID-19: FG lifts ban on inter-state movements as JSS 3, SSS 3 students to resume school
The Federal Government on Monday lifted the ban on inter-state movements across the country as students from Junior and Senior Secondary Schools would now be allowed to resume school.
Dr Sani Aliyu, Coordinator of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 disclosed this at its news conference in Abuja.
Aliyu said that though the current nationwide curfew would still remain, but added that movements across state boundaries could now take effect.
According to him, there is now permission of movement across state borders but only outside curfew hours with effect from 1st July.
He said that the JSS 3 and SSS3 students would resume to enable them prepare for their examinations that would allow them to another class
He also stated that civil servants within grade 14 and above must also resume with strict adherence to COVID-19 protocol, adding that the wearing of masks was now mandatory.
According to him, access to government premises will not be allowed without the use of face masks.
Aliyu explained that the nation wide curfew imposed from 10 p.m to 4 a.m was still valid.
He however, stressed that Aviation industry would resume operation as soon as practicable.
News Agency of Nigeria reports that the PTF had on June 27 embarked on a dry run test of the aviation.
The Minister of Aviation, Sen Hadi Siriki told newsmen that the airport was 90 per cent ready for operation, adding that with full compliance to protocol guiding COVID-19.
Edited By: Maureen Atuonwu (NAN)
Oyo State has recorded its highest single-day increase in new coronavirus cases after the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), on Thursday, announced 103 new cases in the state.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the new figures raise the number of confirmed cases in the state to 764.
The NCDC tally for June 18 indicated that the state holds the fourth spot for confirmed coronavirus cases
with Lagos, FCT and Kano leading in the first three positions respectively.
NAN reports that the government, which recently opened 10 community-based testing sites across the state, has witnessed a rapid increase in its COVID-19 cases since May.
As of the time of this report, the state has recorded nine COVID-19 related deaths with a total of 280 recoveries.
The state government had, on June 15, directed Primary Six pupils as well as JSS III and SSS III students to resume classes from June 29, and that religious centres should reopen at 25 per cent capacity.
However, this decision has sparked criticism from some residents and trade unions.
The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) describing the decision as surprising and unexpected.
Edited By: Chinyere Bassey/Abdulfatah Babatunde (NAN)
The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), Oyo State branch, has kicked against the state government’s plan to reopen schools and worship centres, amid growing COVID-19 cases.
The association, in a statement jointly signed by its Chairman and General Secretary, Dr Akin Sodipo and Dr Oluwaseun Adebayo respectively, described the government’s decision as surprising and unexpected.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the state government had, on June 15, directed Primary Six pupils as well as JSS III and SSS III students to resume classes from June 29, and that religious centres should reopen at 25 percent capacity.
“The NMA, being a critical stakeholder in the war against the pandemic, has been following closely the progression of the disease and its attendant morbidities and modalities within the state and the country at large.
“We can conveniently say from the statistics at hand that these decisions, although with good intentions, may not be safe for the pupils and indeed, the citizens at large, at this time that the disease appears to be on the increase.
“The NMA is, therefore, using this medium to appeal to the governor to reconsider the opening of the schools and also probably put a cap on the number of congregants at religious gathering for now, to help us study the trend of the disease for a little while,” the NMA said.
The association further urged the governor to ensure strict forcement of the existing measures to curb the spread of the pandemic.
It stressed that joining forces to make such important decisions in the fight against COVID-19 would ensure the state and its people emerged victorious within a short period.
“We believe in the intention of this administration in curbing the impact of this disease.
“We also wish to commend the governor for always listening and responding appropriately to the yearnings of the people of the state,” NMA said.
Meanwhile, the state has confirmed 661 coronavirus cases, with 56 new cases and nine deaths, according to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control General Fact Sheet for June 17.
Edited By: Chinyere Bassey and (NAN)‘Wale Sadeeq
Some stakeholders have expressed divergent views as Oyo State Government on Monday released its plans to reopen some arms of schools.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Gov. Seyi Makinde had directed that Primary Six pupils, Junior Secondary School (JSS) Three and Senior Secondary School (SSS) Three students were to resume classes from June 29.
Reacting to the directive, Kayode Adeyemi, the President, National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS), commended the governor for taking the step.
Adeyemi, who noted that the reopening was a step in the right direction, said: “At least, if we start with that level we can know and be able to ascertain what will play out.
“If we start at that point we will be able to have an informed position that will be helpful in opening the other arms of the schools.”
But Mr Tojuade Adedoyin, the Oyo State Chairman of the Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT), said the directive was opposed to that of the National Committee on COVID-19.
“The directive to open schools for Pupils in Primary Six, Students in JSS 3 and SSS 3 called for caution as it is contrary to that of the National Committee on COVID-19 which directed that all educational institutions must remain closed for now.
“NUT will continue to monitor the situation before June 29 and make a formal position known on it,” Adedoyin said.
NAN also reports that Gov. Makinde said students in critical classes were to resume at the end of June to ensure they were well-prepared for the public examinations ahead of them.
He said that the schools were to observe the COVID-19 protocols as released by the task force, ensure that stations for washing of hands were provided in all schools, while all students were to compulsorily wear face masks.
According to him, schools are to provide hand wash points with the support of their Parents/Teachers Associations (PTA).
Makinde explained that the resumption of critical classes at the end of June 2020 would be two clear weeks ahead of the state’s drop-dead date of July 15.
He added that by that date, it would be decided whether other categories of students would return to classes.
“The taskforce will not mind shutting down everywhere if evidence emerges that the COVID-19 safety protocols are being violated.
” Should there be an explosion in the number of cases, however, the state government will intensify enlightenment campaigns to ensure the safety of our people,” the governor said.
Edited By: Kamal Tayo Oropo/Mufutau Ojo) (NAN)
The Delta Government has released a time table for television/radio open distance learning for JS3 and SS3 students during the temporary closure of schools due to Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
The state Commissioner for Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education, Mr Patrick Ukah, said this in a statement on Friday in Asaba.
According to him, the programme, tagged “Delta State Teleclass”, which is in partnership with the state Ministry of Information, is a television and radio open distance learning programme.
“The programme is for students in the state preparing for 2020 BECE and examinations to ensure that students learning do not stop during this period of schools’ closure.
“The programme which will be aired on Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), Asaba, 9.30 a.m. to 10.30 a.m., Delta Broadcasting Service (DBS), Warri television and radio stations, 9 a.m. to 10 a.m., Bridge Radio, Asaba, 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. and Crown FM, Warri, 2 p.m. to 3 p.m.
“The programme will be aired from Monday to Friday each week from April 4 to May 1, 2020, in the first instance for 30 minutes each for JSS3 and SSS3 per station.
“On Monday, JSS and SSS will have Mathematics, while on Tuesday will be English Language for both categories.
“JSS will have Basic Science and Technology on Wednesday, just as SSS will have Physics same day.
“On Thursday will be National Value for JSS, while their senior counterparts will have Chemistry same day. Pre-Vocational Studies will be aired on Friday for JSS while same day SSS will study Biology,” he said.
The commissioner advised parents and guardians to ensure that their children were armed with their writing materials and listen to the free lessons.
Edited By: Abiemwense Moru/Muhammad Suleiman Tola
The management of the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) has directed workers in some of its departments and divisions to stay at home for 14 days as part of measures to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus.
The directive was contained in a circular issued on March 23, in Lagos by Ms Hadiza Bala-Usman, Managing Director, NPA.
Bala-Usman explained that essential departments such as Marine and Operations, Health, Safety and Environment, Security and Finance had been advised to maintain their respective duty posts.
“Following the current Coronavirus Pandemic (COVIDー19), the under-listed non-essential divisions/departments are hereby directed to stay away from duty for fourteen (14) days effective from March 23.
“Members of staff are advised to be conscious of their health and safety by adhering to the preventive measures put in place by the Medical Division of the Authority and other relevant government agencies.
“Staffers are enjoined to strictly comply with this directive,” she said.
She listed the departments to include Corporate and Strategic Communications: Staff from JSS3 — MSS4, Audit Division: Staff from JSS3 — SSS1, Legal Services/Board: Staff from JSS3 — MSS4, Corporate and Strategic Planning: Staff from JSS3 — MSS4.
Others are Managing Director’s Office: Staff from JSS3 — MSS4, Monitoring and Regulatory Services: Staff from JSS3 — MSS4, SERVICOM: Staff from JSS3 — MSS4, Public Private Partnership: Staff from JSS3 — MSS4, Abuja Liaison Office: Staff from JSS3 — SSS1, Human Resources: Staff from JSS3 — MSS4.
Also listed are Administration: Staff from JSS3 — MSS4, Engineering: Staff from JSS3 — MSS4, Land and Assets Administration: Staff from JSS3 — MSS4, Enterprise Risk Management: Staff from JSS3 — MSS4 and Superannuation and Investment: Staff from JSS3 — MSS4.
The NPA boss said: “These Essential are to report to their normal duties: Managing Director’s Division, Executive Director Finance and Administration, Procurement, Information and Communication Technology.
“Others are Medical Services, Finance, Marine and Operations, Security, Health Safety and Environment, Facility Management, Drivers assigned to Managing Director, Executive Directors, Medicals and Operational drivers.”
Others listed in this category are Correspondences and Mail Room, and Departmental Heads and Assistants at the Port Level.
Edited By: Tayo Ikujuni/Ismail Abdulaziz
Enugu State Police Command says it has arrested 10 suspects for alleged various criminal offences in different parts of the state.
Parading the suspects on Wednesday in Enugu, the state Commissioner of Police, Mr Ahmad Abdurrahman, said the command also recovered one dagger, one sewing machines and N700,000 from the suspects.
Abdurrahman noted that the feat was achieved by police operatives on Operation Puff Adder with the active collaboration of law abiding residents of the state.
He noted that the offences ranged from criminal conspiracy, child trafficking, murder to cultism.
The commissioner said the command through the Central Police Station on March 5, arrested four suspects that were involved in baby sales and trafficking within Bunker, Coal Camp axis of Enugu.
“One of the suspects, Miss Uchechi Joseph, got pregnant and was taken to one nearby Moonlight Hospital and Maternity by one Abubakar Idris, where she put to bed a baby boy.
“However, Dr Benedict Agbodache of the said hospital/maternity bought the baby at the sum of N300,000 from her and she used the sum of N45,000 out of the money.
“Upon arrest, the doctor admitted to buying the baby from her mother and selling him to one Ukamaka Onah for N1million.
“The baby has been rescued; while investigation is ongoing with a view to arresting more suspects and bringing them to book,’’ he said.
The commissioner said the command recovered N700,000 and one sewing machine from four suspects.
He also noted that on March 9, a suspect, Dominic Nwajobi, 28, was arrested for allegedly murdering one Emmanuel David during a fight after a misunderstanding.
Abdurrahman also said that a 16-year-old SSS-2 student of one of the secondary schools in Awgu council area of the state, allegedly stabbed to death his classmate and took to his heels.
“The suspect/student was later arrested; while the state Criminal Investigation Department (CID) is investigating the matter,’’ he said.
The commissioner noted that the command through its Anti-Cultism Squad arrested four suspects over alleged cult clashes within the 9th Mile axis of the state on March 10.
He noted that the clash, allegedly between some members of Viking Confraternity and Black Axe Confraternity led to the killing of three persons on the night of March 9.
Abdurrahman lauded the support and cooperation the command had been getting from the good people and government of Enugu state.
“I will appeal that residents do more and seriously join police in fighting criminals in their areas and neighbourhoods by exposing criminals and their nefarious activities,’’ he said.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Ismail Abdulaziz
A Federal High Court sitting in Jos on Tuesday struck out a suit filed against a suspect, Nanpon Sambo, following confirmation of his death by Barau Dikko Teaching Hospital, Kaduna.
Sambo was in 2014 charged with illegal possession of fire arms before the news of his death in July 2019 while in custody of the Police in Abuja.
The presiding Judge, Justice Dorcas Agishi, who struck out the case said that, “nobody tries a dead man, so the suit against Sambo can’t continue.”
“The Barau Dikko Teaching Hospital, Kaduna, has provided all the documents in prove that the suspect is dead and has since been buried by Kaduna North Local Government Area of Kaduna.
“The case is hereby struck out post humourously,” the declared.
The judge then ordered that the items earlier found in Sambo’s possession including the RPG pump action Gun, the Bomb, Charger, a Toyota Highlander and a Car Key be handed over to the State Security Services (SSS).
Nigeria News Agency reports that when the case came up for continuation of hearing, he court registry produced the documents the hospital provided as ordered by the court in the last sitting of Feb. 19.
The documents include the death certificate and list of 40 corpses the Kaduna North LG evacuated from the hospital mortuary for burial in November 2019 among others.
Mrs Keturah Saliyuk, the Prosecuting Counsel, had told the court that since the hospital has proved to the court beyond reasonable doubt that the suspect was dead, she has no objection than to apply of the defendant posthumously.
“My Lord, now that the Barau Dikko Teaching Hospital has provided all documents to prove that Sambo is dead, we have no option than to apply for the discharge of this case against the defendant posthumously.
“Secondly sir, we wish to also apply for an order that all the items found in possession of the deceased defendant should be given to the SSS, ” She solicited.
The defense Counsel, Mr Nanchip Dafam, did not object to the application.
Justice Agishi then struck out the case and ordered that SSS should take possession of all the items confiscated or found in possession of the dead Sambo.
NAN reports that the Police, through it’s Counsel, Mr Joshua Ayanna, had broken the news of Sambo’s death to the Court in August when pressure was mounted on them to produce him for trial.
Ayanna had told the court that Sambo failed ill and died in detention and when taken to Barau Dikko Teaching Hospital, he was confirmed dead.
Justice Agishi had ordered for the Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the hospital to come and prove the claims of the police with documents.
At the last sitting, two Representatives of the hospital, Dr Godwin Iko-Ayuba , a pathologist and Mr Y.I. Maiadashi, a Legal/Administrative Officer, gave testimonies on the death of Sambo but couldn’t produce the needed documents as proofs.
The court again ordered them to produce the documents at the Court Registry on or before two weeks, which they complied and made them opened in court on Tuesday and ended the case.
Edited By: Sadiya Hamza
Osinbajo turned 63 on Sunday.
Also, no fewer than 100 market women from Karu and Jikwoyi, Abuja suburbs, threw a surprise birthday reception for Osinbajo whose birthday coincided with the 2020 International Women’s Day.
The women sang birthday songs for Osinbajo as he joined them at the De George Resort in New Karu where they took photographs with him.
Osinbajo thanked them for their solidarity and prayed for God’s continued blessings in their lives and families.
“I want to thank every one of you for this wonderful surprise birthday party; those of you who are not yet 60 will be 60, 70, 80, 90, 100, in Jesus mighty name.
“All of you and your children will prosper in this land and experience promotion.
“Everything that you ask from God he will do for you, so my next birthday will be bigger and better than this and I will attend your own birthdays too.”
Osinbajo, afterwards, proceeded to the Jikwoyi Mini Stadium where he met with the management and players of FC Liberty International.
He spoke to the players about the importance of hard work as everything could be achieved by hard work.
“Talent is good but even if you have very little talent, with hard work, you can achieve what you want in life,” he said.
Earlier at the Aso Villa Chapel, an SSS 1 girl, Damilola Oriowo, who scaled a fence to meet Osinbajo during the 2019 Presidential election campaigns in Kubwa, Abuja joined other Nigerians at the service.
The student and her parents were recognised at the service by the vice president and they joined him in the photo session afterwards.
The vice president recalled how Oriowo had made determined efforts to personally meet him during the 2019 campaign; praising her resolve and welcoming the friendship.
During the service, Gowon prayed for God’s continued blessings and guidance for Osinbajo and commended the commitment and dedication of the vice president to the service of the nation.
“Let me join all the good people, sons of God here, to wish you a very happy birthday, and to ask for God’s blessings on you; and to say how much we all appreciate you.
“You are the one who is standing for all us, Christians throughout this country.
“When the darts are thrown at the government whether individually or collectively, and when everything is said, we know it is you that is standing firm for all of us who are of faith and I will like to say to you that we all appreciate you.
“We know that you are doing an exceptionally herculean job and we are proud of you; and continue to bless you and wish you many happy returns,” Gowon said.
Also, staff of the Office of the Vice President played a novelty football match to mark the occasion with the Department of State Services (DSS) team emerging winner.
The competition held at the football pitch of the Family Worship Centre, Abuja had staff of the Media, Protocol, Police and DSS units, competing for the top position.
Osinbajo, who was on ground to present trophies to the teams at the end of the game, commended the staff of his office for their unity and for rejoicing with him on his birthday.
The staff with other friends of the vice president also joined the celebrator in cutting a cake.
All prizes won by the various teams have been donated to charity.
Edited By: Ismail Abdulaziz