The Chairman of the Southeast Governors’ forum and Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi, disclosed this at the Government House in Abakaliki, the state capital while briefing newsmen of the outcome of the virtual meeting of the forum on Sunday.

Umahi said the forum also reviewing the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic in the region, adding that school infrastructures will be reviewed to support the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) protocols pending when the Federal government decides on when it is safe to reopen schools.

While urging the Igbo people to continue to comply with the COVID-19 protocols, the governor said eastern states will commence COVID-19 testing on every household, targeting people of 65 years and above.

To Reopen Or Not

The South-East Governors’ decision comes as the debate on whether to reopen schools amid the coronavirus pandemic continues.

On July 13, the federal government released guidelines for the safe reopening of school.

“Now is the time to plan and address the eventual safe reopening of schools and learning facilities,” Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, said.

“As a responsible government, it is also our duty to provide comprehensive guidelines for a safe and hitch-free reopening of schools and learning facilities. We do so knowing that the health, safety, and security of learners, teachers, education personnel, and families are priorities.”

However, schools have remained closed across the country as the pandemic rages on.

The federal government has relaxed restrictions to allow final year secondary school students prepare and sit for WAEC examinations, but many have voiced concerns on the health implications of such a move.

“For the avoidance of doubts, schools have not resumed,” Chairman of the Presidential Task Force for COVID-19, Boss Mustapha, said on July 2. “Only critical examination classes will be allowed to resume for those who need revision before examinations.

“As we have informed you, the Federal Ministry of Education will consult further with stakeholders before issuing guidelines that will lead to full resumption.

“We appeal to Nigerians to continue to show understanding and to ensure that their wards take full advantage of electronic platforms provided for learning.”

On Sunday, Nigeria reported 555 new cases of COVID-19, pushing the country’s total caseload past the 40,000-mark, according to the NCDC.