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Delay in reopening schools 'announced in error' – Liberia


MONROVIA, Liberia – Education chiefs apologised on February 12 for wrongly announcing a postponement of the reopening of Ebola-hit Liberia's schools, blaming the mix-up on "problems at the ministry".

Classrooms were shut six months ago to limit the spread of the virus as the epidemic neared its peak, but lessons had been due to restart next week – before a two-week delay was announced on February 11.

"We had some problems at the ministry. I ask all schools to disregard yesterday's release. We are sorry about that," the deputy education minister Ramsey Fomoyan told the state-run ELBC radio station. 

The reopening has become something of a saga, with the initial date of February 2 extended to February 16 and then March 2, before the latest delay was withdrawn.

Fomoyan apologised for the timetable being changed so many times. 

Liberia and its neighbours Guinea and Sierra Leone are battling the deadliest Ebola outbreak on record.

Schools in all three countries were closed last year over the outbreak, which has killed more than 9,000 people.

Although there has been a recent spike of cases in Guinea and Sierra Leone, the overall trend has been significant slowdown in new infections, paving the way for a gradual return to normal.

In Guinea, children returned to school on January 19 while Sierra Leone has said it will restart classes on March 30. – Rappler.com