A Deputy Minister for Health, Dr. Bernard Okoe Boye following calls for closing down schools over reported coronavirus cases in some Senior High Schools has said such a decision is not advisable.
Dr. Bernard Okoe Boye made the comment on Eyewitness News on Citi FM monitored by Georgeweb.org following calls from the National Council of Parent-Teacher Associations of Ghana for the government to dismiss students in Senior High Schools to go home.
The Association in a statement dated Monday, July 13, 2020, urged for the 2020 WASSCE and BECE for school candidates to be suspended amid the outbreak of the locally transmitted coronavirus cases recorded in schools.
According to the Association, their call for the postponement of the two national examinations is “to prevent further spread of the killer disease among the children and staff”.
It also said “not enough health personnel are either stationed in or attached to many of the schools for routine surveillance due to the pandemic. More worrying is the fact that despite good counsel and encouragement, most parents insist their children should be brought home.”
However, the Deputy Minister for Health responding to the request on Citi FM Eyewitness News said “everyone is exposed to the virus and people can only protect themselves from contracting the disease by adhering to the outlined COVID-19 preventive protocols.
He furthered that “I have to check with the Ghana Education Service on their protocols and on their statutes on letting students go home but the advice I can give as a public health person is that when you pick your child from school and say you are taking your child home, remember the virus is at home, the virus is at the workplace and the virus is on the street. The best bet is to take care of yourself because your child might actually be exposed more.”
“Imagine if you have a parent who is a taxi driver who comes across 200 people before he goes home or imagine a parent who sells at Makola or myself who moves from one hospital to the other, the virus is around. We all can expose our kids. That’s why all of us must take care of ourselves so we don’t carry the virus home,” he added.