School Heads Lock Out Zoomlion

Communication Manager Communication Manager

By Gifty Arthur

Waste management company, Zoomlion, has complained bitterly about the behavior of some school heads in the ongoing mass disinfection exercise in basic and Senior High Schools (SHS).

The company which is undertaking a Ministry of Education sponsored disinfection exercise in basic and senior high schools for the October 5, school reopening as directed by President Akufo-Addo, says school heads are refusing to open classrooms for the exercise.

It says often, they encounter difficulty in getting these headmasters and headmistress, to open classrooms earmarked for the exercise.

Though these authorities are informed ahead of the exercise, the company, says they find it difficult getting into the classrooms and facilities, because the authorities will not avail themselves with keys to the schools.

The company's Senior Communications Manager, Atagure Francis Abirgo, who revealed this to journalists during the exercise in Tamale in the Northern Region, said this often delays the work of personal of Zoomlion, who have been assigned to do the exercise at a planned date and time.

"We experienced that yesterday too. I want to use this opportunity to appeal to heads of institutions to make it a point to open the schools for the disinfection exercise.

Yesterday, we were in a school and we called the headmaster, it was not as if he was not aware and that was the second time he refused to open the doors.

And it is not a private school. If you are doing that, it is not Zoomlion you are punishing, rather the lives of the students you are putting in danger", he said to corroborate claims by Regional Managers of the company.

Mr Atagure Francis Abirgo, pleaded with the school authorities to see the importance of the exercise and attach some agency for a smooth programme which is expected to end next week ahead of the coming of both second year Junior and Senior High School students.

He also tasked parents to show interest in the safety of their wards by adding their voices to calls to get the authorities to open the school for the exercise.

In all, some 520 basic and 79 SHS, are being disinfected by the personal of the Victor Control Unit of Zoomlion in the Northern Region alone. This exercise also, includes private, vocational and special schools.

The exercise, which will also aid the fight against bedbugs have various departments of the schools namely classrooms, dormitories, administration blocks, canteens and others disinfected.

Despite the delay tactics by the authorities, Mr Abirgo, assured the company is equal to the task and will ensure it finishes the work before the students come back next month.

Assistant Headmaster of Ghana Senior High School, Abdul-Nasir in Tamale, said the school is set to receive the second years, adding there is enough space to observe social distancing and other protocols for the prevention of COVID-19 virus.

He, however, said the school was challenged with infrastructure, especially classrooms for mass reopening next year.

He said, GHANASCO, will need some 30 more classrooms to face out the double track system.

He pleaded with the sector Ministry, to assist the school with infrastructure ahead of mass reopening next year.

Principal of Dabokpa Private Vocational and Special schools also in Tamale, Mariama Mahama, said unlike other schools, they have no issue with infrastructure, adding they have it in abundance.

She said the Institute is ready for reopening, saying aside government providing some of the items for the strict adherence of the COVID-19 protocols, the Institute has also produced it own Facemasks for use and also for sale to the general public.

Other schools that were disinfected on Friday were; Bamba International Academy, Tiyumba S/D School, Kalponhin S.D.A. School all in Tamale North among others.