MORE than 1 000 Angolan children attending school in Namibia along the Oshikango border will not return when schools reopen tomorrow.
The education authorities in the Ohangwena region are highly concerned about the situation.
The borders between the two countries have been closed since the state of emergency was declared and only pupils with Namibian citizenship are allowed to enter Namibia.
Isack Hamatwi, education director in the Ohangwena region told The Namibian yesterday the situation is worrisome as some of these pupils are in their final school years and commute between Angola and Namibia every day to attend school.
"It is a very worrying situation and we truly pity them, but there is nothing we can do to assist them at the moment. In the meantime we have requested schools to provide us with information detailing their particulars in order to see how many exactly are affected and how we can possibly help them," he said.
There are around 20 combined schools close to the Oshikango border post.
Hamatwi said the Covid-19 outbreak has negatively affected these pupils' schoolwork and that of the education directorate in the region.
Hamatwi said if the situation persists, the directorate would be forced to print handouts and deliver them to the border so that the affected pupils could keep up with their schoolwork.
"Some of these pupils are Namibians who are residing at villages along the border, but they will not be allowed to commute from Angola to Namibia every day, because if they enter the country they will be subjected to 14 days of quarantine. The issue of printing out school handouts is also costly and we don't know if we will have enough funds to do it," said Hamatwi.
Deputy minister of education, arts and culture Faustina Caley on Friday at a press conference said the ministry is sending pupils back to school from tomorrow in phases to observe the situation as it unfolds.
She said Grades 11 and 12 will attend the first phase.