By Amechi Idumuebor (AGENDAWATCHDOG) – About 20 schools in South Africa’s Western Cape have been forced to close down for disinfection, following reports that close to 98 teachers and 1,800 students have tested positive for the dreaded COVID-19.
Prior to the reopening of schools, the provincial Education Department, in a bid to prevent the spread of the disease among teachers and students, released the sum of R280 million (US$16.3 million) for the purchase of medical and Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) such as face masks, digital thermometers, hand sanitisers, liquid soaps, and cleaning supplies for staff and students.
Slamming the government’s decision to reopen schools, despite the continued escalation of COVID-19 cases in the country, with the country having recorded close to 55,421 COVID-19 cases and 1,210 deaths, opposition voices had expressed their fears. Mmusi Maimane, a former Democratic Alliance leader and currently leading a civil society group, One South Africa Movement, is one of the voices opposed to the government’s plan to reopen schools, writing President Cyril Ramaphosa a letter, and demanding a reply within 48 hours, failing which, charges would be filed against the government.
South Africa allowed schools to reopen on June 1, 2020.