From Mustapha Adamu, Kano
The United Nations International Children Fund (UNICEF) has said that its observation has indicated that secondary and primary schools students have missed 750 lessons in Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Kebbi and Sokoto states during COVID-19 lockdown last year.
The Chief of Field Office, UNICEF field Office, Kano, Maulid Warfa revealed this at a two-day sensitisation workshop, jointly organised by the UNICEF and Federal Ministry of Education and Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), held at the Grand Central Hotel in Kano yesterday.
Warfa said that UNICEF had therefore donated Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to some schools in the selected states in order to make the students observed the COVID-19 protocols with ease and protect themselves from being infected with the disease.
He noted that there was the need for the students to be assisted either at home or at the school for them to recover from the calamity that befell them as a result of the pandemic.
He discloswd that his organisation had deliberately engaged the five states in the Northwestern part of the Country and train them on the implications of COVID 19 Pandemic.
The Chief of field Office UNICEF said the Workshop was aimed at building the capacity of stake holders on education on the implications of COVID 19 and how it terminates human lives .within a very short time.
He said most of the stakeholders were Principals, Directors Public Enlightment Directors of planning in the Ministry among others .
He said the UNICEF is being funded by Global Partnership for Education to assist Children especially students affected by the pandemic and work with stake holders in order to reduce the rate of COVID 19 in the Country.
He said two local government areas were selected for the pilot scheme in Kano namely Kunchi and Tsanyawa local government and in Katsina state Kurfi and Kankara local government areas, among others.
In her brief remarks, Mrs Chiemezie Nwhobiara Josephine Deputy Director Federal Ministry of Education said “the Workshop is apt considering the fact that in time of the pandemic and crisis, education must continue “ you must be alive before you read and write hence education must continue in time of pandemic that is the main reason why we say schools must be kept safe for learning to take place .
She said “No parent will release their Children to go and die, parents must be convinced that Schools are safe before their Children are allowed to go to School.
Mrs Josephine stated further that “ I have been trained on COVID 19 protocols and we come to Kano to cascate what we learned to the stakeholders in the field so that they can step down to others if they are back to their respective communities .The Deputy Directed highligted that that is why the SBMC, SUBEB were involved and expected to pass the message to the grassroot levels.
On her part, Hajiya Hannatu Bello of the NCDC said the reason for their participation in this all encompassing Workshop is to ensure that participants are adequately train on the COVID-19 protocols.