In a related development, the Lagos State Government has warned against environmental pollution such as defecating and urinating in the public, and urged people to embrace proper environmental hygiene standards as a way of curbing the spread of EVD.
Commissioner for the Environment, Mr. Tunji Bello made the call at a “One-day Train the Trainers Programme” organised by the Ministry for Environment Health Officers”, popularly called WoleWole in all the 57 Local Government/LCDAs and Scientific Officers in the State Civil Service, with the theme: Creating an Army of Advocacy to curb Ebola Virus through Effective Enlightenment at the Grassroots.
Bello explained that the State Government has embarked on series of actions to control the spread since the outbreak in Lagos State. To complement other efforts of government, he said the ministry has commenced educative programmes for residents starting with the “Train the Trainer” after which an army of these trained officials will embark on mass public enlightenment campaigns to markets, motor parks, and schools in all the 57 Local Government Council Development Areas to create awareness on how to prevent the spread of the dreaded disease.
Enugu is Ebola free
Also, following the growing anxiety over possible spread of the EVD in Enugu State, the state government has declared the state free from ebola, just as it explained that at the moment, all those who were suspected to have contact with the nurse who left Lagos for Enugu have been investigated and there was no case of EVD detected.
A statement by the Special Assistant to Governor Sullivan Chime on Health Matters, Mr. Johnny Ezievuo, said even with that assurance, nothing was being taken for granted. “We are taking all precautionary measures to ensure that nothing is left to chance. Interestingly health care delivery is one of the cardinal programmes of Governor Chime’s administration.”
Ezievuo who stressed the need for people to uphold the practice of good hygiene in their homes, offices or shops as panacea to any disease, however, maintained that all the programmes of the state government were tailored towards the need of the people, saying that citizens have a sense of belonging because it is participatory.
Delta monarch bans burial ceremonies
In furtherance to the measures being taken against ebola threat, the Ovie of Agbon Kingdom, Ogurimerime Ukori the 1st, has directed that no funeral ceremony be held in the kingdom for now. A statement by the Secretary of Agbon Traditional Council, Chief Emma Avworo, quoted the Agbon Monarch as also banning religious crusades or night vigils in the kingdom.
The statement directed that no corpse should be brought into Agbon Clan and warned everyone in the area to stop the consumption of all forms of bush meat especially bats till further notice.
TUC tasks Lagos on ebola
Trade Union Congress of Nigeria, TUC, weekend urged the Lagos State Government to do more to curtail the spread of the deadly ebola disease, especially through massive enlightenment campaigns before it spreads to other parts of the country. TUC in a statement by its President and Secretary General, Bobboi Kaigama and Musa Lawal, respectively insisted that Lagos State had the wherewithal in terms of human and material resources to contain the spread.
According to the statement, Lagos, being the most populated state and the economic hub of the country, the flurry of activities brings the people in regular contact with one another, thus accentuating the need for intensification of the fight against Ebola.
“To this end, we anticipate that the anti-ebola public awareness campaign should be stepped up, and well-equipped quarantine/treatment centres should be set up at strategic locations within the state. We also counsel the Lagos State Government to engage more professionals, make all necessary consultations with stakeholders both within and outside the country and provide adequate protective measures for medical personnel and other care-givers attending to Ebola-infected persons. The government should also take out life insurance policies in favour of such workers. Indeed no measure that would encourage them in the fight against the ebola menace would be out of place.
“The Congress specially commends the concerted efforts of Nigerians so far, especially the Federal Government, who have demonstrated clear sense of responsibility and focused responsiveness to the ebola challenge. Nevertheless, we urge Nigerians to remain alert and dutifully observe all healthy practices as are needful to stamp out ebola, including keeping their environments clean, cooking their foods well, regularly washing hands with soap, etc. as health professionals have advised. Surely ebola has not come to stay, but we would do well to speed up its departure.”
Alimosho General Hospital, Igando
Meantime, there was a mild drama at the Alimosho General Hospital, Igando, last week when news filtered in that an Ebola patient who came from Pastor T. B Joshua’s Synagogue had died.
As soon as the information made the rounds nurses, and even patients in the wards were said to have hurried out in panic to avoid contracting the virus. However, it took the efforts of the Chief Medical Director and other doctors to convince the people that there was no such case at the hospital.
Responding to the incident, Lagos State Government said there was no reported case of the death of any person infected with ebola at the Alimosho General Hospital, Igando or any of the other government hospitals in the state.
The state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Lateef Ibirogba, in a statement said government dispelled the rumour making the round that an Ebola infected person had died at the government owned hospital in Alimosho.
He said the State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris had addressed the issue during the last Ebola Virus Disease update press briefing, where he assured residents of the state that the hospital was safe and medically sound for them to patronize. Ibirogba cautioned the residents against sending unsubstantiated messages through the social media network, adding that the EVD was being properly managed by the state government in collaboration with the Federal Government and other international partners.
“The state has opened an Isolation Ward for the treatment of EVD infected persons where they would be adequately managed by experts in line with the World Health Organisation Standards,” he stated.