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Nigerian students mixed on a return to school

Bored by staying home in quarantine, children play in the street in Enugu, Nigeria. (Chinalurumogu Eze/YJI)

Enugu, NIGERIA – The temporary shutdown of schools due to the covid-19 pandemic has created mixed feelings in the lives of students, secondary and university students here.

Elege Emmanuel Raphael in his aunt’s shop helping with sales while waiting for school to resume. (Chinalurumogu Eze/YJI)

Some students have indulged themselves in different activities to avoid idleness.

Elege Emmanuel Raphael, a Senior Secondary 2 student of Army Day Secondary School in Enugu, earns a bit of money helping his aunt with sales in her mini kiosk.

Raphael said he doesn’t care about the virus and wants to go back to school.

“The cash can’t keep me forever,” Raphael said. “I want something that will build me forever and that’s going back to school.”

For some, schoolwork is easier than being at home.

Twelve-year-old Ogbodo Chijioke, playing football with a group of friends whilst playing football admitted that he misses school because he doesn’t want to continue taking care of his younger brother.

Okechukwu Blessed, a computer software student at Rocana Institute of Technology in Enugu said he doesn’t feel like going to school again because he’s earning cash already.

“I have a job at ShopRite,” he said, smiling.

Edison Chidera, a student at the Institute of Management and Technology, especially sympathizes with final year students in universities.

“They would’ve passed out this year,” he said.

Ogbodo Harrison, who is in the final year of studying mass communication at the University of Nigeria in Nsukka, feels differently.

“What’s the rush?” Harrison said. “The outside world is scary. They should take more time.”

Chukwuemeka Jasper, who studies mechanical engineering at the Michael Okpara University of Agriculture in Abia state, had another reason for desperately wanting school to resume.

“I miss night parties. I miss cooking tasteless and salty meals,” Jasper said.

Chinalurumogu Eze is a Reporter with Youth Journalism International.

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