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15.07.2020 Health

COVID-19: I Never Said Schools With 15% Positive Rate Will Be Closed – Okoe Boye Says Reportage Malicious Propaganda

COVID-19: I Never Said Schools With 15% Positive Rate Will Be Closed – Okoe Boye Says Reportage Malicious Propaganda
LISTEN JUL 15, 2020

A Deputy Health Minister, Dr. Bernard Okoe Boye has denied saying schools in Ghana will be shut down if their COVID-19 infection rate reaches 15 percent.

He described such report as “malicious propaganda.”

“I write to state categorically that I haven’t said anywhere that schools would be shut down if [their] COVID-19 rate reaches 15 percent,” he said in a statement.

“I stated on the program that the meticulous preschool activities put in place by the Akufo-Addo government and the protocols and logistics put in the schools would help see students through to the end of their examinations,” Dr. Okoe Boye added.

Calls have been made for the closure of schools due to recent increases in COVID-19 infections among students.

Some 55 staff and students of the Accra Girls Senior High School have been infected with the virus.

About five schools in the Western Region have also recorded COVID-19 cases.

Despite the calls, the government has maintained that there is no need for the closure of schools yet.

Dr. Okoe Boye reiterated the government’s stance saying: “I still am convinced that the government that invested in the tuition and boarding fees of all SHS students can be trusted to take care of students to the very end of their stay in school.”

He further called on the parents, some of whom have trooped to schools demanding the release of their wards, to exercise restraint.

“Just as the over 200,000 tertiary students finished their programs without a calamity, so would these SHS students too finish by the grace of the Almighty.”

Find below his full statement

RE: SCHOOLS WOULD BE SHUT DOWN IF COVID-19 RATE REACHES 15%.

I write to state categorically that I haven’t said anywhere that schools would be shut down if COVID-19 rate reaches 15%. It is sad and unfortunate that Myjoyonline would decide to engage in this malicious propaganda at a time when we have to focus on disseminating informed education material on COVID-19 related matters.

I spoke on Asempa FM yesterday, the 14th of July, 2020 and helped listeners to appreciate the fact that calling for closure of schools because of recorded cases cannot be just and scientifically sound. This is because COVID-19 cases could be picked anywhere including the church, schools, mosque, market as well as educational institutions.

What is important is to find out whether there are protocols to isolate, trace contacts and treat cases. I stated on the program that the meticulous preschool activities put in place by the Akufo-Addo government and the protocols and logistics put in the schools would help see students through to the end of their examinations. MULTIMEDIA recorded some COVID-19 cases; nobody called for its closure.

I still am convinced that the government that invested in the tuition and boarding fees of all SHS students can be trusted to take care of students to the very end of their stay in school. I would like to urge all parents to keep calm, call their school heads or 311 in case they have any queries. Just as the over 200,000 tertiary students finished their programs without a calamity, so would these SHS students too finish by the grace of the Almighty. May God bless our homeland Ghana.

Dr. Okoe Boye (MP).

A deputy minister for Health

---citinewsroom

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