THE Federal Government on Wednesday pulled the brake on the preparation to reopen schools to enable pupils in Primary Six, Junior Secondary School (JSSIII) and Senior Secondary School (SSSIII) write their final examinations.
Education Minister Mallam Adamu Adamu said SSSIII pupils will not be participating in the upcoming West African Examination Council (WAEC) examinations.
In a chat with reporters at the State House after the seventh weekly virtual Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting in Abuja, the minister said there is no date for resumption of schools yet.
The development negated a directive by the President Task Force (PTF) Control to states to begin the process of reopening schools for the resumption of pupils in exit classes.
Minister of State for Education Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, who gave the directive during the Monday briefing of the PTF, said schools should reopen to prepare the pupils for the Senior Secondary School Certificate Examinations (SSSCE) scheduled to begin on August 4.
But, announcing the u-turn on Wednesday, Adamu said he would prefer that pupils lose an academic session than to expose them to dangers.
He appealed to state governments that had announced reopening of schools to reconsider their decision for the sake of the pupils’ safety.
Speaking on the effect the decision to keep schools closed could have on JSSIII and SSSIII pupils, the minister said Nigeria would not open the schools yet, not even for the WAEC, which is a regionally-control programme.
He, however, debunked an earlier report, which claimed that his Minister of State (Nwajiuba) announced August 4, as resumption date for schools, saying the minister was misquoted.
Adamu said: “I don’t know whether you journalists are misquoting the Minister of State for Education or maybe quoting what WAEC said and made it into a story. Schools under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Education will not be opened on August 4 or anytime soon.
“Our schools will only open when we believe it’s safe for our children and that is when the situation is right, not when the incidence of the infection is going up in the nation. I just want to make it clear.
“We will not open soon for examination or for any reason, unless it is safe for our children, even WAEC. WAEC will not determine for us what we do. Schools will remain closed.
“Yesterday we called on stakeholders who will tell us the situation and the way it should be done for it to be safe. While the meeting was going on, WAEC announced that they are starting examinations. Let’s see who they are going to start with.
“I will also like to use this position to ask those states that have already announced (reopening), I appeal to them. I think it is not safe. I feel responsible for all children, not just those who are in federal government-controlled schools. Please, let’s save our children from this.
“One infected child is enough to infect a whole class. When they close from class, they go into the dormitory.
This is not the right time to open schools. I appeal to the states that have already announced to reconsider it.”
When asked if Nigeria will be the only country to miss out of the WAEC examinations, he said: “As minister of Education, if I’m given the chance, I don’t mind Nigeria losing a whole school year than exposing our children to danger. WAEC is a parastatal of the Ministry of Education.
They cannot determine for the government what it does.
Ekiti Government To Establish Ranches In The State
Ekiti State government has declared its plan to establish ranches in line with the federal government National Livestock Transformation Plan.
In a statement released by the Commissioner for Information, Mr Akin Omole, said the State government was ready to key into ranching as a step to stop the increasing numbers of killings and kidnapping by the herdsmen which has become a major crises in the state.
Omole while speaking stressed that the state government can no longer bear the entrenched level of criminality by herders who unleash their terror on the innocent Farmers and the law abiding citizens of the state.
Omole maintained that the state government is working hard to make sure lives and property of the Ekiti citizens are safe.
Recall the incident that occurred recently in Ikole Local government where herders killed two innocent farmers in their farm.
Breaking: Students, Staff Of Government Secondary School Kangara Abducted Again
In a new incident that took place in Niger State in the early hour of Wednesday, Students and staff of government secondary school, Kangara has once again been abducted.
The students and staff in one of the school hostel were assembled and all taken away by the abductors.
Total number of the students and staff abducted is yet unknown.
In another swift report, 10 out of the abducted students has been rescued.
South West Governors To Meet In Ondo With Leadership Of Miyetti Allah
As a result of ultimatum given to the Fulani Herders in Ondo State, the south west Governors will meet with the Leadership of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria on January 25.
The Governor of Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu, gave the Fulani Herders in Ondo State Forest Reserves seven days ultimatum to vacate the area as a result of their involvements in the constant attacks and other criminal activities happening in the state.
According to the report, the basis of the meeting is to find lasting solution to the unending banditry and the rifts between the herders and farmers in the state.
The Chairman, Ondo state chapter of Miyetti Allah, Bello Garba, says the Leadership of the Association is already on ground to attend the meeting slated to hold today Monday 25.
“The National Chairman of Miyetti Allah is in town now and I cannot talk about what we want to discuss at the meeting but I can assure you that we are going to address the press tomorrow after the meeting,” Bello said.
Presidency had earlier made the statement that the Ondo state Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, have no right to ask the Fulani Herders to leave his state.