The Federal Government had last week announced that schools across the country would resume on Monday, September 22,2014 prompting opposition from several sections including the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA).
The resumption date which had earlier been shifted to Monday, October 13, 2014 in the wake of the outbreak of Ebola in the country, has also been denounced by the Lagos state government which has come out to say that the date is not advisable considering the fact that stakeholders in the state were still locked in crucial discussions considering the matter.
According to a Vanguard report, Governor Babatunde Fashola gave the hint when he received the country representative of the World Health Organization (WHO) Mr. Rui Van Gaz when the latter paid him a courtesy visit at his Alausa, Ikeja office.
The governor said: ” The state government is in the process of ascertaining through scientific risk evaluation, whether it will accept the date announced by the Federal Government.”
He said that if the evaluation eventually turned out to be that the Monday, September 22, 2014 resumption date proposed by the federal government would be risky, schools in Lagos would not resume on the said date.
Mr. Van Gaz had earlier on praised Governor Fashola and the Nigerian medical community for their efforts in curbing the spread of the virus, adding that the Lagos state government should not get complacent as a result of the reduction in the number of cases reported in the country, saying the ongoing war against Ebola is one that cannot be won unless the virus was totally eradicated.
In Van Gaz’ words “On schools resumption, we need to ensure that the schools are fully prepared in terms of availability of water, soaps and sanitizers. The teachers must be fully aware of what needed to be done when they are faced with any suspected case of Ebola Virus Disease, EVD in their school. The students must be enlightened about the symptoms of the deadly disease.
“Even though the number of Ebola cases has reduced and most of the contacts are out of the 21-day quarantine, we should avoid any complacency. Until the last case is over and surveillance completed, we should not relent in the effort at tackling the disease. We need to learn from this experience by not only dealing with the disease but to strengthen the entire health system in the country.”