The Deputy Minister of Education in charge of Secondary and Vocational Education, Dr. Yaw Adutwum on Wednesday morning visited the Kumasi Academy to assess the situation on the ground.
His visit to Kumasi follows the death of some seven (7) students of the school this year.
Academic work on campus has been suspended to pave way for the vaccination of all students after the death of 4 students in the past week.
XYZ News’ Ashanti regional correspondent, Jonathan Ofori reports that the deputy minister met heads of the Ghana Education Service and the Ghana Health Service at the regional Coordinating Council.
Speaking to the media, the minister said efforts are being made to finally close down the Kumasi Academy after students and teachers go through a three day antibiotic drug administration. He then attributed the proposal of the school closure to the World Health Organisation (WHO).
This, the minister said, would give authorities ample time for further investigations to identify the type of bacteria that has caused eleven deaths in the school.
“We have come out with a decision after our meeting, the students are going to go through a three day antibiotic drug administration and after that, the school is going to be closed down to enable WHO and the Ministry of Health to do an environmental scan of the school to see if we can unravel what is causing this tragedy so that we can really get to the bottom of it and ensure before the school reopen, we have a grasp of what has happened so that we will be able to protect the children that have been entrusted in our care,” Dr. Adutwum said at a press briefing after a crunch meeting with the Ashanti Regional Minister, officials from the Ghana Health Service and the Ghana Education Service over the matter.
He also led a team from the GHS and the Education Ministry to inspect the situation at the school where he met the teaching and non-teaching staff in closed doors over the matter.
XYZ News’ Jonathan Ofori reports that eight (8) students have died in the school since March 2017 while about 36 have been hospitalised following the epidemic. Authorities have little knowledge on the presumed “atypical” bacterial infection.
Ghana Health Service’s Director of Public Health Dr. Badu Sarkodie wednesday morning disclosed to XYZ News that findings on samples sent to the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research will be released later on Wednesday.
By Wednesday noon over 1,500 students had been administered with the broad spectrum antibiotics drugs.
Meanwhile, XYZ News’ Parliamentary correspondent Charles Akrofi reports that the Member of Parliament for the area who is also Minority Chief Whip, Muntaka Mubarak, has called on parents who have already taken their wards from the school to bring them back so they can take the 3 day medication and enable the Ghana Health Service collate their data.
He also called on the Minister of Health to institute findings into how the team conducted investigations into the initial samples taken for research due to the fact that the Health Minister was not properly briefed on that research.