WHO Pledges To Contain Ebola Virus In Nigeria

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The World Health Organisation on Tuesday vowed it would contain the dreaded Ebola virus in Nigeria, particularly its spread to Rivers State.

Also, the state government said it had covered about 96 per cent of the high risk cases that had primary contacts with the late Dr. Iyke Enemou, who died on August 22, 2014 after contacting the Ebola virus.

WHO’s Country Director in Nigeria, Mr. Rui Vaz, also promised to give technical support to the Rivers State Government to ensure that the disease was controlled.

Vaz, who spoke when he led a delegation of the organisation on a visit to the State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Sampson Parker, said early diagnosis was crucial to the control of Ebola.

Describing WHO as a technical agency and not a financial organization, Vaz commended the commitment of the State Governor, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi and Parker towards tackling the disease.

“I will like to highlight that Ebola can be contained and we are going to contain it, there is no doubt. But everything depends on all of us. It is not only the responsibility of the Ministry of Health. This is a cross-cutting issue; it requires attention, and the critical matter is the leadership and ownership of the process.

“WHO is in the country to provide technical support. We are a technical agency; we are not a financial agency. It is very important to highlight that there is a strong commitment by the governor and the commissioner, and also other entities. I see also the high involvement in the response of the private sector.

“The most important thing in Ebola control is the early diagnosis of any potential suspected cases and to take necessary precautions, in terms of isolation where it is needed, and other measures to stop the chain of infection,” the WHO Country Director said.

Vaz, who also described Rivers as an important economic front in Nigeria, pointed out that WHO deployed its officials to the state to establish an Emergency Operation Centre immediately it learnt of the first case of Ebola in Rivers.

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