ODUDUWA INTERVIEW: COVID-19 and the Agony of Private School Teachers

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It is no longer new that the closure of schools has brought severe hardship to the owners and teachers of private schools having stayed at home for almost four months without financial aids from the government to ameliorate their sufferings.

Today, OduduwaNews crew interviewied some teachers and owners of private schools and stated below the accounts of their ordeal since the beginning of the pandemic.

Adekola Abosede who is a teacher in a private school said “Private school teachers are only depending on the mercy of God, the school fees the Proprietors collected in March have not been paid out as March salary, it is getting worse, parents of children doing home lessons too are also broke, some have taken their children to learn skills. May God help us in this country.

Mark Chidibere a Lagos based teacher in his account, said “four months ago till date no source of survival. We are grossly downtrodden! The proprietors have been in a state of incommunicado since and kept us in a state of penury now. Your help will go a long way.
May fragrance never leave the hands that give rose.

Azeez Ajisafe, a Proprietor while lamenting the economic hardship the COVID-19 has brought to them, said “we, the proprietors are having a rethink on diversifying. We are all in it. We are all frustrated. However, if everybody is discouraged from investing in school business or decided to leave private teaching, who will teach your children? It’s obvious all our children can’t attend Nigerian public schools. Bulk of our frustration should be directed to the government for not doing the needful to ameliorate the suffering of those who have temporarily or fully lost their jobs due to this pandemic.

Olabisi Crown while lamenting said
“Let me tell you my pain, I am a school teacher in a private school, no salaries from March till now, the okada machine I used to go to work in school has been diverted to commercial okada riding, though, I used to do it early in the morning just for few ours in Lagos. My bike was taken from me by the police saying they have banned okada, I narrated my predicament to them but they did not listen,I showed them my ID card, they refused to understand my plight, they demanded for 30k for my bike to be released. Imagine, on that day I was only having N435 with me and I needed to buy foods and drugs. Government should come to our aides as life is unbearable as I speak to you.

A school owner in Ibadan, Olamide Adebayo while talking to OduduwaNews crew lamented the current state of the economy. He said even before the pandemic some of them who are private school owners were surviving on loans with the belief that they would repay them back when they start receiving school fees but their expectation was dashed by the sudden outbreak of the pandemic. He calls on government to assist them as some of them may not be able to go back to classes again and this will affect the already crumbling education sector.

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