By Chioma Obinna
President of the Nigerian Medical Association, NMA, Prof. Innocent Ujah, on Wednesday said his counsel against the reopening of schools was seen as someone against the progress of the nation’s education sector.
Ujah who made the revelation at a webinar organised by the Alliance on Surviving COVID-19 and Beyond, regretted that Nigeria was not adequately prepared when the schools were reopened.
Decrying the infection rates on school children, Ujah said: ”When the government wanted to reopen the schools, I cautioned them and said if the schools must be reopened there must be necessary preparation to prevent the children from contracting the virus.
”One parent wrote the Presidential Taskforce on COVID-19 that I don’t want people to go to school and that I was being wicked. Now, we all know better; a lot of children who sat for the last WASSCE were infected.”
Ujah also lamented that some corp members have also been infected. ”These are some of the things that could have been prevented if sufficient precautions were taken before reopening the schools.”
He also lamented the disregard for social distancing by Nigerians, saying this had also contributed to the rising COVID-19 cases.
He further explained that social or physical distancing has failed. ”Recall that during the campaign for the governorship elections in Edo and Ondo States, everyone was falling over each other. If you go to the market places, social distancing protocol is not being observed. In that case, are we prepared?
He posited that the country needs to do a lot of sensitisation to ensure that Nigerians comply with all the COVID-19 protocols.