The whole world is currently trying to combat the deadly virus, COVID-19, and bring normalcy to the planet. The COVID-19 disease brought several impacts to the world, particularly on the global economic sector. Most of the states recorded economic declines as most businesses and companies stopped functioning. However, there is hope for the world following the launch of the COVID-19 vaccine. Specifically, the African continent is looking forward to placing an order of several vaccines to save its people from the disease’s ravages.
Apart from COVID-19 disrupting the economic sector for the African continent, it heavily impacted the education sector. Several African states decided to close most of the learning institutions to reduce the spread of the disease. According to reports, the state of the education sector on the continent has improved significantly. Some African states have decided to reopen their learning institutions to resume learning amid the pandemic. Zambia is one of those countries that have taken the route course of reopening its schools.
President Lungu’s Directive on Schools Amid COVID-19 Pandemic
According to recent reports, Zambia has finally decided to reopen its schools after several weeks of closure. The scheduled date was on January 18th (Monday), but President Edgar Lungu has given a directive that there would be a fortnight delay. Therefore, the learning institutions will start receiving their students on February 1st, 2021. The main reason why the President said that there would be a delay of two weeks is that he wants the school-related authorities to prepare well enough and set out appropriate safety measures. This is to safeguard the staff and students against the COVID-19 disease.
The State of Zambia Since Its 1st Case
The Zambian Health Ministry confirmed the COVID-19 pandemic to have reached Zambia in March last year. As of March 17th, the authority or the government had closed all the learning institutions and placed restrictions on other sectors of the country. The country reported its 1st two cases of COVID-19 in Lusaka on March 18th, 2020. The patients were a couple that had gone to France on holiday. According to health records, the 3rd case was on March 22nd, 2020. The patient was a man who had gone to Pakistan. On March 25th, 2020, President Edgar Lungu confirmed twelve cases during a national address. The state recorded its 1st death on April 2nd, 2020. Currently, according to the reports, there has been a surge in COVID-19 infections. There were more than 30000 cases as of Friday (15th, 2021).
Comparison of Zambia With Other African States (Kenya)
At the start of this year, Magoha, the Cabinet Secretary of Education in Kenya, announced that all the learning institutions would be opening. In 2020, the Ministry was hesitant to reopen all the learning institutions at once, so it opted for phased reopening.
In conclusion, we might say that the African states’ governments need to take note that COVID-19 will be here for some time. The authorities need to lay proper measures and adjust to the current circumstances. School is very vital, and it would be wise if the governments apply adequate steps to help curb the spread of COVID-19 in our schools. Besides, the governments should financially support the schools since the COVID-19 financially crippled many learning institutions. As Zambia plans to reopen its learning institutions next month, the government, education, and health ministries should ensure that they strive to safeguard the staff and students by laying proper safety measures.