Stanley Uzoaru, Owerri
The Imo State Government has set aside any plans for the resumption of schools in the State until the ongoing COVID-19 testing programme in all its 27 Local Government Areas is concluded.
The Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Declan Emelumba, who briefed journalists alongside some of his other colleagues after an Executive Council meeting presided by Governor Hope Uzodinma at the Government House on Wednesday, informed that the Executive Council received a report on the community testing for COVID-19 in six Local Government Areas of the State.
He revealed that out of 1,000 people tested in the six council areas of the State, only 24 were found to be positive. Emelumba disclosed that Imo State is one of the nine states in the federation that have embarked on community testing.
The Commissioner explained that the ongoing community testing programme in the State will reflect on the planned resumption of schools. He added that it had been delayed for a while to enable the testing go round in all the 27 council areas in the State.
Emelumba said that because of the prudent management of resources by the current administration, the State has qualified to benefit from the State Fiscal Transparency and Accountability Sustenance (SFTAS) which guarantees her a whooping sum of $20 million for 2020.
He regretted that because of the inability of the State to meet up with the criteria set by the World Bank, Imo was not able to receive the disbursement for 2018 and 2019.
He disclosed that the Imo State Government has concluded plans to establish new model primary schools in the 305 Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) wards of the State.
According to him, the schools, when established, will be equipped with modern facilities such as ICT centre, e-Library, primary healthcare centres, 24-hour power supply, modern sporting facilities and other amenities.