Olawale Ajimotokan in Abuja
The Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 has asked students with symptoms of COVID-19 to stay at home as resumption of the Senior Secondary School 3 begins this week nationwide.
The PTF faulted state governments asking students to produce results of their COVID-19 tests before resumption.
It said instead of compulsory test, which would only be valid for the period the test was conducted, students already showing symptoms of the virus should be asked to stay away.
The task force’s National Coordinator, Dr. Sani Aliyu, said these at the PTF press briefing in Abuja.
Before it made a U-turn on Monday, the Ogun State Government had last week asked all boarding students to go for a compulsory COVID-19 test.
Parents, whose children are in private schools, on Sunday protested against the N25,000, which their children were asked to pay for the test.
But Aliyu while responding to a question on the issue pointed out that the status of somebody could only be confirmed as of the time the test was conducted.
He said, “It is only valid for that period of time; for that point in time when you had the swab taken. The next day, you could have a positive result, especially if you are in an incubation period.
“It is far more important to monitor for symptoms and check for temperature, and make sure that students that have symptoms of cough or any other respiratory symptoms are told to stay back at home and seek medical attention.
“This is far more useful than doing COVID-19 test before they resume. It is safer as well to monitor the students rather than test them at a particular point in time.”
Aliyu also announced that the PTF would on Thursday release new protocols in the next phase of efforts to curtail further spread of coronavirus in the country.