Maputo — Chimoio (Mozambique), 14 Jul (AIM) - Two higher education institutions in the central Mozambican province of Manica have temporarily stopped face-to-face classes because of the spread of the Covid-19 respiratory disease.
The institutions concerned are the Higher School of Journalism (ESJ) and the Manica Higher Polytechnic Institute (ISPM).
In both cases the students are regarded as those most exposed to contamination, and so the authorities have decided to interrupt temporarily face-to-face teaching.
The director of the Manica Provincial Social Affairs Services, Maria de Lurdes Brige, told reporters that, in addition to the two schools, her own directorate had been forced to close its doors because of the pandemic.
"We confirm that we have positive cases n the schools", said Brige. "In my directorate, two staff members also tested positive, and so we decided o close the doors while the offices are being disinfected. We have set up virtual offices and we are working from home".
"It's the same with the higher education schools", she continued. "We have students and teachers who are Covid-19 positive. Faced with this scenario, we have no choice but to close the schools to block the spread of the disease".
Brige did not say how many students and teachers are infected, but described the situation as "worrying". She called for greater responsibility and observance of preventive measures by the entire student community in order to reduce the impact of the pandemic.
There were unconfirmed reports of positive cases from other educational institutions, such as the Pungue University.
"We are working to check the situation", said Brige. "If it's true, we shall be obliged to take a decision to protect the health of the students and the staff".
According to the latest Health Ministry figures, since the start of the pandemic 3,126 people have tested positive for Covid-19 in Manica, and 586 of these are active cases.
"The situation is a matter of concern", said the Provincial Director of Health, Izidoro Xavier. "We have staff on the ground, at the schools, the bus terminals, the markets and other public places, to check on compliance with the measures laid down to fight against the disease".
"Prevention consists of face masks, washing hands regularly with soap or gel, and social distancing", said Xavier. "In these places, our teams are ensuring compliance with the government's recommendations".