Nigeria on red alert after first Ebola death

Saturday, July 26, 2014
By Paul Martin

Timeslive.co.za
26 July, 2014

Nigeria was on alert against the possible spread of Ebola on Saturday, a day after the first confirmed death from the virus in Lagos, Africa’s biggest city and the country’s financial capital.

The health ministry said Friday that a 40-year-old Liberian man died at a private hospital in Lagos from the disease, which has now killed more than 650 people in four west African countries since January — the deadliest outbreak in history.

The victim, who worked for the Liberian government, collapsed at Lagos international airport after arriving on a flight from Monrovia via the Togolese capital Lome on Tuesday, according to the Nigerian government.

He did not come into contact with the public in Lagos other than health workers before being isolated at the hospital, they added.

The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Saturday that efforts were being made to track down people the victim may have come into contact with on his journey from the Liberian capital.

“Contact tracing under way — Liberia, Nigeria, Togo. WHO deployed staff to Nigeria to help w/ this & safe handling of remains,” the global health body’s African region said on its Twitter account @WHOAFRO.

Nigerian Health Minister Onyebuchi Chukwu had previously said all passengers who travelled with the victim on the Togo-based carrier ASKY from Lome had been traced.

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