COVID-19: FG debunks reports on reopening schools

The Federal Government has debunked purported reports that it has ordered the reopening schools at all levels in the face of ravaging coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The government has also disclaimed reports making the round that it has blamed the Vice-Chancellors of Universities for the ongoing indefinite strike embarked upon by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).

Director Press and Public Relations, Federal Ministry of Education, Mr. Ben Bem Goong, said there was the need to clarify the insinuations, he described as fake news. from COVID-19

While the Federal Government had directed the closure of schools at all levels in the country over three weeks ago to forestall the spread of the deadly coronavirus (COVID-19), the ASUU members, on the other hand, embarked on the indefinite strike over stoppage of their salaries by the government for non-enrollment on the Integrated Personnel Payroll Information System (IPPIS).

However, a report suggesting that the Federal Government has directed all tertiary institutions in the country to resume Academic Session by organising online teaching for students has been circulating in a section of the media due to COVID-19.

The authors of the report quoted tye Minister of Education, Malam Adamu Adamu to have given the directive during a teleconference with 237 Vice Chancellors, Rectors, and Provosts on how to reopen using virtual learning.

But Ben Goong in a statement made available to newsmen on Sunday in Abuja urged the public to disregard the false publications.

He said: “I would like to use this opportunity to clarify a few issues which many of you have called me to clarify. First is the issue of reopening schools.

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“The ministry has not directed the reopening of any school at any level. The purported press release by the Minister to that effect is a clear forgery as it did not emanate from the Minister.

“Parents, students, and the general public are advised to please disregard the fake release.

“The second issue I wish to clarify is a story making the rounds that the Federal govt is blaming Vice-Chancellors for the ongoing strike embarked upon by ASUU.

“At no time did any Federal government official make that kind of statement to the press. Any insinuation in that direction is simply emanating from the fertile imagination of the author and that the ministry has nothing whatsoever to do with it.

“Stakeholders and indeed the general public should disregard such statements,” he said.

NIGERIAN TRIBUNE

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