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University of Nairobi Towers. Kenyan universities were closed in March due to COVID-19.

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Education ministry tells varsities to prepare for phased re-opening

NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 19-The Ministry of Education has asked Universities to expedite repair works so as part of preparations for phased re-opening.

Principal Secretary State Department for University Education and Research, Amb. Simon Nabukwesi, said the re-opening of universities for normal learning sessions will be on a case-by-case basis based on approved compliance with protocols issued by the Ministry of Health on COVID-19. 

He noted that very few universities have made maximum progress in implementing the guidelines and are conducting online sessions as they await inspection.

The PS was speaking during his visit to the South Eastern Kenya University campus in Kitui County and Machakos University in Machakos County.

“We may announce re-opening anytime but it is essential that all universities comply with the COVID-19 preventive measures if they are to reopen and avoid spread of infections or even death among students,” said the PS.

He outlined social distancing handwashing with soap or use of sanitizers, wearing of face masks and monitoring body temperature as the minimum requirements for the health and safety of learners while at the institutions.

Education stakeholders have been holding consultative forums ahead of a government school calendar review meeting scheduled for September 25.

President Uhuru Kenyatta is at the end of September expected to issue new guidelines on the further re-opening of the economy which has slowed down since March.

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He is also expected to update the nation on the re-opening of schools.

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