Until the presidential mandate ordering the closure of all institutions of learning in the country on Wednesday, classes at the University of Liberia (UL) had been ongoing, although an increasing number of students had begun staying away from classes due to the spread of the Ebola virus.
However, in compliance with the President’s directive and as part of the fight against the Ebola epidemic, the administration of the UL on July 31 announced the closure of all academic activities effectively immediately until further notice.
The UL Administration, in a joint session of the Faculty Senate and Council and in consultation with UL president, Prof. Dr. Emmet A. Dennis, had, before the President's address to the nation, by its own discretion, decided to close the university on Saturday, August 2, in response to the Ebola threat.
Dr. Dennis is presently out of the country.
The decision to close the institution was predicated upon a series of lectures that are being delivered by Dr. Vuyu Kanda Golakai, vice president for Health Sciences and Dean of the UL’s A.M. Dogliotti College of Medicine, as well as other professors, on the dangers of the dreaded virus.
While the UL remains ‘temporarily’ closed, the administration is asking vice presidents, administrative directors, deans and the associate vice president for Human Resource to “kindly maintain a very minimal staff to respond to emergencies, if any.”
Meanwhile, all support staffers who are not specifically requested to form a part of the skeletal staff are being asked to stay away from any of the campuses.
At the same time, the UL Administration is requesting all members of the UL family to continue monitoring the university-owned radio, LUX 106.6 FM, for updates and announcements concerning the resumption of normal activities.
On Wednesday, President Sirleaf announced that,
- Without exception, all schools are also ordered closed pending further directive from the Ministry of Education, the President ordered as parts of measures to contain the deadly Ebola menace.
- All non-essential staff, to be determined by their Minister or Head of Agency to be placed on a 30-day compulsory leave
- Friday, August 1 is declared a non-working day, to be used for the disinfection and chlorination of all public facilities; all borders that are to remain opened are to be directly supervised and controlled by the Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization whose duties it shall be, working with the assigned health authorities, to ensure strict adherence to announced preventive measures including preliminary testing for fever.