Amidst the COVID-19 scourge ravaging the world and consequently affecting every sphere of human lives including the education sector, the Lagos State Government has renewed its commitment to addressing the decay in public schools infrastructure by directing all contractors to return to the sites.
The Chairman of the Special Committee on Rehabilitation of Public Schools, Mr. Hakeem Smith, disclosed this at a strategic meeting with the technical team, stressing that all the contractors on public school projects must quickly commence work in order to deliver within an appreciable time frame.
He implored all members of the technical team to be up and doing in their supervisory role at the various sites, emphasising that so much is expected to foster delivery of the campaign promises of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu in the education sector.
While appealing for non-compromise on the quality of work, the Chairman observed that since schools are not in session, it is expected that projects should be delivered promptly as the contractors need to take advantage of pupils’ absence from school to speed up work on-site and ensure that quality standards are delivered.
Smith recalled that the Lagos State Government early in the year awarded the construction of 20 school projects under Phase 1 but the COVID-19 pandemic slowed down the pace of work at the various sites, maintaining, however, that with the recent ease of the lockdown, few of the contractors have returned to site.
He pointed out that others have also been directed to resume at the construction sites while observing the State Government and National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) guidelines for building projects such as the use of face masks and physical distancing among all workers.
The Committee Chairman further assured that the Phase One school projects just rolled out include the construction of new classroom blocks, hostel blocks, rehabilitation of old classroom blocks, fabrication of Pupils, Principals and Teachers’ furniture and the construction of watchtowers to enhance security in public schools.
According to him, the fabrication and supply of over 60,000 units of dual combined students’ benches and tables with an under-bench compartment for storage in public secondary schools and another 25,000 units for public primary schools has commenced, stressing that adopting such ergonomic furniture design is simply for the comfort of the pupils.
The Chairman also disclosed some of the sites where contractors have since commenced work to include Ijaiye-Ojokoro Housing Estate Senior Grammar School, Ojokoro; Lagos State Junior Model College, Igbokuta, Ikorodu; Oriokuta Junior Grammar School, Ikorodu; and Ojota Junior Grammar School, Kosofe. Others are Elemoro Community School, Ibeju-Lekki; Girls Junior Academy, Lagos Island; Akintan Junior Grammar School, Surulere; Festac Junior Grammar School, Amuwo-Odofin; Badagry Junior Grammar School, Badagry Town and St. Joseph Secondary School, Mushin.