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Vaccination scandal: Low turnout as South-East schools resume

By News Express on 13/10/2017

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•Deserted primary school in Enugu
•Deserted primary school in Enugu

Normalcy is gradually returning to the South-East states of Abia, Anambra, Ebonyi, Enugu and Imo after the commotion over the ‘killer’ vaccine allegedly administered on students and pupils in the region. Many schools yesterday recorded low turnout of pupils and students.

This came as the Senate yesterday described as national embarrassment and shame, the lack of public diagnostic centre for detection of the current outbreak of monkeypox in some states of the federation.

Though teachers of private schools were observing public holiday for the National Association of Private Schools (NAPS), many public schools recorded low turnout of students and pupils. In most of the public schools visited in Abakaliki, Ebonyi State capital, such as Presco Secondary School, Nnodo Secondary School and St. Patrick Urban Primary School, many students did not turn up.

A parent, Okoro Kingsley Kanayo, said he did not allow his children to go to school because of the ‘killer’ drug rumour. He noted that his children would start school on Monday after he must have been sure that there was no such vaccine in the area. In Anambra State the greater part of yesterday morning was taken over by rain, a few children managed to make it to school. When our correspondent visited Amenyi Girls Secondary, Awka, students were seen seated in their classes taking lessons while a few were milling around. An English teacher in JS3 class, Mrs. Chinwe Ezeani, said that Wednesday’s crisis was fuelled by rumour.She said: “Except for the rain that came down in the morning till pass 9a.m., there is no reason for anybody to be away from school today (Thursday).

As you can see, classes are going on and the teachers are all in school. “We didn’t want to let the students out yesterday but somebody broke off the school gate key and they all rushed out.

You don’t jump into fire because you heard something bad is happening miles away, after all, no soldier came to our school yesterday (Wednesday) but all the same, it has happened.” At Kenneth Dike Secondary School, students were also seated in their classes.

The story was the same at Ikwodiaku Primary School were the children were receiving lessons. The turnout was generally low but that can be attributed to the early morning rains. In Enugu State, many private schools remained shut as parents refused to take their wards to school after Wednesday’s panic withdrawal of children from school over monkeypox virus scare. Public primary and secondary schools, however, opened for academic activities but witnessed dismal attendance by pupils.

Urban Girls Secondary School, New Layout, Enugu, also recorded low attendance, although teachers and nonacademic staff were all in attendance. A teacher in the school said the population of students in the school was above 1,000 but those in attendance were not up to 150. Private schools were the worst hit as most of them did not open at all. Some of them had communicated the parents to bring their wards to school as from Monday.

The private schools include Zion Gate Nursery and Primary School, Prime Rose International School, and St. Philips Anglican Nursery and Primary School, all in Enugu.  (New Telegraph)

Source News Express

Posted 13/10/2017 2:25:40 PM

 

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