The Kwara State government has pledged to support private school owners who have been hardly bitten by the lockdown occasioned by the novel coronavirus disease for some couples of months.
Recall that schools were shutdown nationwide days after Nigeria recorded a number of confirmed cases in different states, and are still under lock and key.
As a fallout, private school owners and their workers have been affected as they live without pay, a development which has generated outcries and calls for support.
In a new development, the Kwara State government has promised to offer interest-free loans and grants to private school owners to beat the hardship.
A statement signed by Rafiu Ajakaye, Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, today in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital made this known.
It reads, “Kwara State Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq on Friday pledged to offer interest-free loan and grants to private school owners to be able to pay their workers and prevent massive loss of job in the sub-sector.
“AbdulRazaq said he would ‘not be blind to the plight’ of any Kwaran, including proprietors and workers across private schools in the state who he acknowledged have been hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic due to the closure of schools and some other businesses.”
AbdulRazaq, however, requested that the school proprietors get a proper database for the number of private schools and private school teachers in the state, noting that it is very critical for planning.
“The government will therefore consider your request for grants or loan, which of course would be interest-free. We can do that as we did for ‘transport’ workers. But we will need to have the right database to know the number of private schools in the state, the number of their teachers, and their students.
“The issue of database is critical for planning. We want to know how many private schools we have (and) where in the state. If we do so, we can even give land (to those who may need it) and issue certificate of occupancy and other relevant documents.
AbdulRazaq urged the proprietors to work out the modalities for the financial support with the education ministry, but said schools currently registered with the government and paying their taxes until the pandemic would be prioritised in the intervention.