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NEW: Government finally speaks on the decision to reopen schools

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The Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, has disclosed that President Akufo-Addo is receiving briefings from the pandemic Technical Taskforce on limited school re-openings and will make a firm decision on whether or not schools should reopen in January by December 30, 2020.

He said the decision will be reached after a cabinet meeting.

Schools have been closed since March 15, 2020, as part of the government’s measures to curtail the spread of the COVID-19.

Educational institutions were subsequently reopened partially for final year students to complete their academic work and also sit for their exit exams and for continuing students to complete their academic terms.

President Nana Akufo-Addo on Sunday, August 31, 2020, during his 16th update to Ghanaians, announced that all nursery, kindergarten, primary, Junior High School (JHS) 1 and Senior High School (SHS) 1 students and pupils will have the completion of the 2019/2020 academic year postponed to January 2021.

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He subsequently postponed the reopening of tertiary schools in the country also to January 2021.

Speaking at a Minister’s Press Briefing in Accra, Mr. Oppong Nkrumah said “we know that parents are anxious rightly so. Many of us are parents but schools have to be opened in a careful manner so that we do not have a second wave of infection. The president is just about to take a final decision. He continues to gather both the reports and scenarios. By the 30th when the cabinet is done, a firm decision will be taken.”

The Director-General of the Ghana Health Service (GHS), Dr. Patrick Kumah-Aboagye, also advised Ghanaians to adhere strictly to safety protocols during the Yuletide in order to avoid a spike in the country’s cases.

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Dr. Kumah-Aboagye indicated that as of December 19, the country’s active cases stands at 933, with the total deaths recorded being 333.

He further stated that it is imperative for Ghanaians to follow all the safety protocols during the holiday season to avoid further spread.

“We are going to have a lot of social activities. Weddings, churches, the places of worship are also going to be full. We advise that safety protocols are adhered to, social distancing, washing of hands, we must wear our masks all the time, provide safe and running water, etc.”

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