By Ishola Balogun
TheEbola virus that has claimed four lives in the country has been described as a ‘germ warfare against Nigeria’.
Reacting to the death of the fouth person in Nigeria, the President of Association of Industrial Security and Safety Operators of Nigeria (AISSON), Dr. Ona Ekhomu said: “The Ebola pandemic is germ warfare against Nigeria and Nigerians and it must be defined as the national security threat and combated vigorously in order to save Nigerian lives.”
He said that the response by governments at all levels to Ebola was too little, too late. He said that as far back as June 2014, the Nigerian authorities should have called in the military, declared a national emergency and closed the land borders – in order to prevent entry of the deadly disease into Nigeria.
The air-borders should have been shut against countries like Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea that were experiencing the pandemic.
Ekhomu said that military personnel should be deployed to guard persons under quarantine, or they should be taken into a central location for quarantine and observation. According to him, “it is irresponsible to expect persons said to be under quarantine to police themselves. They must be guarded by the military in the public’s interest.”
Dr. Ekhomu, who is also chairman of the School of Management and Security said that the Health Ministry was embroiled in resident doctors’ strike and was not sufficiently equipped to stop Ebola spreading in Nigeria.
He said there was an absence of emergency reaction for Ebola despite the large number of reported deaths in Liberia and other West African countries. He said the response so far has been knee jerk in nature and could not deal with the severity of the threat posed by the pandemic.
According to him: “the woeful failure in preventing the entry, growth and spread of the disease has informed my call for more purposeful handling of the biological threat.”