Sep 17, 2020(Nyamilepedia) — The Ugandan Ministry of Education and Sports (MoES), Hon. Janet Kataaha Museveni who doubles as the First Lady of Uganda, has not ordered reopening of schools as circulated on social media.
A draft guideline report on reopening of schools that made its way into social media is trending, alleging that schools will be reopened this Sunday, September 20th, 2020.
The draft report, which is still popular among the South Sudanese who are third-party beneficiaries of the Ugandan education system, might look legitimate; however, it is not yet approved by the highest authority, according to Ugandan officials.
Responding to these speculations, the Minister of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) and National Guidance, Hon Judith Nabakooba has rubbished the claims saying schools are not to be reopened any time soon.
Hon. Nabakooba reiterates that it is only the president that has the absolute powers to decide when the schools shall be reopened, adding that it is not the Ministry of Education and Sport that should make such announcements.
“The mandate to guide the nation on the reopening of schools and other institutions is with His Excellency the President of Uganda. When it comes to the national Covid-19 response, I want to call upon Ugandans to be calm and ignore some of the speculative messages regarding the reopening of public institutions,” Nabakooba said.
Once decided by the president, the Minister of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) confirmed that once the decision is made by the president, then the reopening of schools shall be carried out in phases.
“The President will very soon come out to address the country about the progress being made but I ask everyone to remain calm as we wait.’’ Judith added.
“It will be done in phases. Two or three weeks after candidates have reported, the ministry will assess the situation and if everything is fine, a second lot will be added, another one will also follow up. In the end, all students will be at school.’’ Judith said.
The authorities of East African countries are considering the reopening of schools; however, leaders are extremely careful not to rush a decision that may spike up cases of coronavirus that has already devastated the region.
President Museveni is set to make a COVID-19 public briefing on Sunday, September 20th, 2020 and perhaps he will address the reopening of schools.
While South Sudan has agreed to reopen schools and leave the rest of the responsibilities in the hands of the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Health, Kenya is still reconsidering reopening academic institutions especially for candidates who will be sitting for their final exams this year.
Uganda may reopen its schools, especially for final year candidates and eventually for everyone, but the final decision on this is yet to be announced.