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Regional News of Wednesday, 24 June 2020

Source: Senyalah Castro, Contributor

Fumigation of basic schools begins in Upper East Region

Workers involved in the exercise Workers involved in the exercise

Waste management company, ZoomLion Ghana Limited under the auspices of the Ministry of Education and the Ghana Education Service has begun a fumigation exercise in over 678 public and private basic schools in the Upper East Region.

The weeklong exercise, which is in line with President Akufo Addo’s guidelines in the fight against the spread of Coronavirus as basic schools reopen, seeks to rid-off disease-causing bacteria and viruses from the learning environments of students.

It is also to rid the schools off dangerous organisms such as bedbugs, mosquitoes, flies, rodents and reptiles.

Kojo Njabore, Public Jobs Manager for ZoomLion told the media in an interview that the exercise was taking place simultaneously in all 15 Municipal and District Assemblies to ensure its timely implementation.

He explained that the two-week period is to ensure an effective and successful exercise which will fully prepare the schools for resumption of academic activities.

Mr. Njabore said the exercise has been put into two folds which comprises rigorous cleaning and fumigation to completely eliminate viruses and bacteria from the learning environments.

“For us to have an effective fumigation exercise, as the schools have been locked down for some number of months now the schools have become very dirty and we have to do cleaning before the disinfection so that we can have an effective disinfection of the places. We can’t disinfect in a dirty environment. So, we will clean and fumigate”. He explained.

When the reporter joined the fumigation team, schools visited saw the team busily sweeping, cleaning and fumigating classrooms, furniture, staff offices, kitchens, windows, walls, ceilings, urinals and toilet facilities.

Some of the Head Teachers the reporter spoke to expressed appreciation to government and ZoomLion for undertaking the important exercise, describing it as a timely intervention in the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic.

They, however, appealed to government to expedite arrangements to dispatch Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) to the schools to complement the fumigation to curb the spread of the virus.

Gumah Lawrence, headteacher of Akurugu-Daboo Junior High School in the Kassena Nankana Municipality said, - “This exercise is very good in a way that this pandemic coronavirus or whatever virus that is hiding in the school that the students may come across, this exercise will help to control the situation.”

“The way they have done the fumigation is okay. But I am expecting that before Friday if face masks, sanitary items and veronica buckets can be provided before the students resume, it is better than them coming before the items arrive because any student at all can carry the virus to school but when the items are there, as soon as they arrive, they will sanitize themselves and we will all be safe.”

The headteachers said preventive protocols such as proper handwashing, social distancing and wearing of nose masks will be strictly enforced when schools resume.

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