Nigeria frees 319 #Ebolavirus suspects

Nigeria frees 319 #Ebolavirus suspects

Monday, September 8, 2014 5:34 pm

The Federal Government on Monday said it had discharged 319 persons suspected  to be infected  with #Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) after completing the three-week observation period.

Amb. Peter Iyamabo, the Deputy Head of Mission at the Nigerian Embassy, Ethiopia,  said this in a submission at the AU emergency Executive session in Addis Ababa.

Iyamabo said the government had treated nine of the 19 established cases following their contact with the Nigerian index case, the Liberian Patrick Sawyer, who imported the disease in July.

He said the country lost eight of its citizens, including the index case to the virus, while two persons were being treated in Port Harcourt and Lagos, respectively.

“ Beyond treating and managing confirmed cases, government at all levels had mounted robust response strategies to the outbreak of the EVD, which had yielded impressive results in containing the spread of the virus,“ the diplomat said.

Ebola screening at Lagos Airport. even outbound passengers will now be screened

Ebola screening at Lagos Airport. even outbound passengers will now be screened

Iyamabo said Nigeria had released 1.3 million US dollars to fund the Ebola response efforts across the country, adding that the effort was being  complimented by the nation’s private sector.

“Outside Nigeria, the government has remained engaged with other affected countries, extending solidarity and support bilaterally and multilaterally through the regional organisation, the Economic Community of West Africa States (ECOWAS).

“At the initial outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease in West Africa, Nigeria contributed 3.5 million US dollars to ECOWAS to assist in containing the disease in the affected countries,“ Iyamabo said.

He said it was Nigeria’s conviction that such public emergencies were best tackled through collective efforts and mutual support rather than adopting measures that would result to isolation and exclusion of affected countries and their citizens.

He urged the council to reject measures adopted by some countries denying entry to some citizens of Ebola affected countries.

“The executive council must unequivocally condemn this trend and reject discriminatory policies that are not based on extant global best practices.

“It is important that the executive council takes appropriate steps to correct the negative impact of these exclusionary policies adopted by some member states,  lest they set a bad precedence for national immigration policies in time of public health emergencies,“ he said.

The session was chaired by Mauritania’s Minister of Maghreb and African Affairs, Madame Hindou Mint-Ainina, on behalf of the country’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation.

Iyamabo, who led the Nigerian delegation, was supported by Dr Nasir Sani-Gwarzo, Director, Port Health Service at the Federal Ministry of Health and Dr Akin Oyemakinde, Chief Consultant Epidemiologist, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control.

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