By Charles Lotara,
Juba, South Sudan,
May 10, 2021 — The Ministry of General Education and Instructions has raised a red flag on members of the public who have turned schools into a marketplace, thanks to the COVID-19 lockdown.
Schools reopened last week under the theme “Safe Re-opening of Schools during COVID-19 Pandemic and beyond”.
But Martin Tako Moyi, the Deputy Minister of Education and Instruction pointed out that members of the public were yet to vacate some schools.
“Most of the schools in Juba have become markets and no longer learning institutions. I am appealing to the higher authorities to help and take actions to remove all the markets away from those schools wherever they are in the country,” Moyi said.
Mr. Moyi was equivocal in his remarks as he did not mention specifically the schools in question and the region.
Hussein Abdelbagi, the Vice President for the service cluster, who was the guest of honor during the re-opening of the school’s celebration said he was going to implement measures to tackle the issue of schools being turned into trading centers be it in Juba or other states.
“I don’t want to see businesses being mixed with schools. Any shops or markets that are mixed with school should be demolished and if that does not happen then I will go on the ground at each school and demolish those markets myself,” he said.
Meanwhile, Abdelbagi urged schools to strictly observe the covid-19 safety measures while at school saying the pandemic was not yet over.
“These measures will have to be carried out in all schools, especially in overcrowded classes. The task force has also constituted a committee that would be monitoring the implementation of the measures,” he said.
In a related story, teachers had gone for months without salaries prior to the coronavirus pandemic lockdown.
When P.8 and S4 learners resumed classes, some teachers were unable to report for duty as a result of financial incapacitation.
The Deputy Minister of General Education and Instructions said the plight of teachers must be addressed at the executive level of the government.
“We want the president of this country to take the issue of teachers’ training and motivation very seriously,” Mr. Moyi said.