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Ebola: 340 Cases Under Surveillance in Rivers State



Liberia Battles Spreading Ebola Epidemic

The Rivers Commissioner for Health, Sampson Parker, on Wednesday said there were 340 Ebola Virus disease (EVD) cases under surveillance in the state.

Parker made the remark in Port Harcourt during a sensitization workshop at Ogu, in Ogu/Bolo local government area.

He said the state government was not in a hurry to reopen primary and secondary schools because of the situation.

Parker stressed that government would announce a date for re-opening of public schools after assessing the situation in the next few weeks.

The commissioner advised people of the area to imbibe a healthy life style to avert contracting the disease.

Parker urged them to always wash their hands with soap and water.

“We want schools to reopen as soon as possible, but we are still assessing the situation before we can do anything,’’ he added.

He called on the people to always report cases of deaths and stop the habit of burying dead bodies in a hurry.

The commissioner urged people of the area to alert local government disease surveillance officers as soon as there were cases of deaths.

“As a matter of fact, every death must be reported to local government health officials before anybody can touch it,’’ Parker said.

Photo Credit: Getty Images/John Moore

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) was established by the Federal Government of Nigeria in May 1976 to gather and distribute news on Nigeria and cover events of interest to Nigeria at the international level for the benefit of the Nigerian Media and the Public.


  1. Ndubuisi

    September 17, 2014 at 5:59 pm

    This report is not that there are Ebola virus in Rivers state is just that the 340 people are under health watch. just want put it out there before readers rush into conclusion.

    • ak

      September 17, 2014 at 6:20 pm

      Does it matter?

      The fact that there is a chance that just 1 person could have the virus is enough to take ALL PRECAUTIONS NECESSARY… SUCH AS NOT REOPENING SCHOOLS- ESPECIALLY PRIMARY SCHOOLS- NATIONWIDE.

    • Ndubuisi

      September 17, 2014 at 6:55 pm

      I am just making a point because part of the problem why this virus is yet under control is most times media create panic to an extent those that have Ebola virus hide it and keep spreading to other people. this is exactly what is going on in Liberia.

    • fleur

      September 18, 2014 at 12:02 am

      Ndubuisi, thank you for the clarification. As an epidmiologist, the first thing I did was believe the RIvers State health hencho knew what he was talking about, which means there are 340 real cases. Glad you have clarified its “exposed individuals”. However, misinterpretation is not the fault of bella naijans. Na the person wey deliver message send wrong message.

    • Ayishaa

      September 18, 2014 at 7:14 am

      Mr epidmiologist, its people like u that Ndubuisi was talking about, how can there be 340 real cases in how many months? Haba..Under surveillance is they are being monitored becos they had primary/secondary contact with the doctors/motuary attendants etc……..and u honestly think if that were the case no one would have found out. Even If the rivers state govt doesn’t announce it, people know where they quarantine location is and if that were the case someone would have leaked the information to the media.

  2. Shadie

    September 17, 2014 at 6:21 pm

    So until those 340 cases under surveillance are all cleared and tests are negative there is still a chance someone out of that 340 might test positive. Why can’t the Federal ministry of health wait for full clearance before declaring that they is no Ebola case in Nigeria and why the rush to open schools by 22nd September as we still have such a large number of suspects under surveillance who in all possibility might still be mingling with the general public.

  3. Balogun Tola

    September 17, 2014 at 8:56 pm

    Let’s take precautionary measures before students are allowed to resume.

  4. Iris

    September 17, 2014 at 9:39 pm

    And the federal government says there is no cause for concern and schools should re-open
    Let the number of people under surveillance get down to zero before we let our guard down

  5. Asaa Osigwe

    September 17, 2014 at 10:39 pm

    Where do we stand.pls mr minister and comissioner, let us wait.children cant go through the trauma of quarantine.nor can a mother watch her child in pain without touching and comforting that child.thereby been at high risk and putting others at risk.what is the rush to resume schools? Which politicians child will still be in nigeria now we have this ebola crisis?more or less go to school here in nigeria.for once, le the government listen to the voice of reason and not what the international community thinks or says about nigeria.

  6. MsT

    September 17, 2014 at 11:34 pm

    Please people in this day and age, when refuse your hug or handshake (especially after church) – abeg do not be offended ohhh. ITs nothing personal. I blow kisses now. Please dont touch me. I hope you dont get offended ohh – just saying sha 🙂


    September 18, 2014 at 12:16 am

    I think the story of the female Nigerian Doctor who survived EBOLA should be widely disseminated . She should be contracted by the US government and the UN as a adviser so that she can help them determine the kinds of programs to put in place as the go in with all the money . Her experience of Faith and steadfastness is worth emulating.
    May God Bless her.

  8. jason Ibrahim

    September 18, 2014 at 8:04 am

    All of you talking about students and not re-opening schools baffle me with your straight-jack thinking..all these students you are talking about are they currently locked up at home?
    Don’t they go to churches with far more crowds than an average school?,don’t they attend parties and go to the new spar mall in Port harcourt? Don’t they still go to hospitals that have the highest risk of contacting Ebola when they are ill? Has any class room teacher been heard to be a primary or secondary contact to a confirmed Ebola patient? Why the emphasis as though schools are the major places to contact the deadly virus? You all just are aiding and abetting lazy teachers who want to stay at home and collect salary calling themselves NUT and propagating illiteracy under the guise of Ebola. An Article is enough for the foolish

    • Suwa

      September 18, 2014 at 10:37 am

      @jason ibrahim, i feel you are the one with a straight jacket thinking and probably no children to send back to scholls, ill just paste a few paragraphs from an article i rad from a concerned mother, may be this will enlighten u more….

      It is understandable that we want our children educated. Ebola virus in Nigeria is an unprecedented occurrence that has to be handled as such. “Better safe than sorry” should be the motto here. So far, we have been blessed in the manner that no child has contacted the disease. Children play indiscriminately with one another.
      A child of what age can be guaranteed to identify the symptoms of the Ebola and keep away from it? How many times do we have to remind our children not to put their hands in their mouths and cover their mouths when they yawn, cough or sneeze? How do we tell them not to play with their friends as they are used to or not to show concern if one of them gets hurt and is bleeding? How can we really be sure that our 3 to 16 year olds would be safe from Ebola in a place where we cannot control who they come in contact with; a place where they share toilets, eat and play with others. How about our babies at crèche who we can’t even attempt to explain this to and who cannot verbalize their day at “school”?
      I am the typical “Nigerian Mum”….ensuring my kids are on top of their school work, home work and leisure activities. At this time, I must pause and realize that prevention is the only option here as there is no cure! If the children have to stay home a little longer while this epidemic is eradicated or contained NATIONWIDE then so be it. If this implies a shorter Christmas break this year or just four weeks of Summer break next year to make up for the lost education time, so be it.
      One thing I am sure no parent wants to deal with is the anxiety if a child comes home with a fever. We all know that at school, children love to share all things with one another from the water in their bottles to the flu. Then again, which parents want to have to take their child to the hospital these days?

      If the doctor in Port Harcourt could go to work for some days after being infected with Ebola then we should be more concerned. This was an educated person, in fact someone who knew the consequences of his actions more than most, but he still put others at risk. Worst of all, these were colleagues and patients who could not tell from his demeanor that he was sick. They trusted him and could never have imagined that he would expose them to a deadly virus.

      To our leaders, I ask what control measures against Ebola have been put in place in ALL schools, particularly the government and state schools? I visited a private school in Abuja and before we could go in, our temperatures where taken. We should remember that even if private schools are well catered for, the children of our drivers, domestic helps and “junior staff” attend public schools.
      How many infrared thermometers have been distributed across these schools in Nigeria? Who would be responsible for taking the temperature of EVERYONE going into ALL schools? Since a symptom of Ebola is sudden fever, how often would the temperatures of students need to be taken in the course of the day? What Ebola emergency responses have been set up by location of ALL schools in Nigeria? What awareness has been carried out in the villages and remote areas of the country, where we have schools too? How will adherence to control measures (if and when they are in place) against Ebola in Nigerian schools be monitored, by whom and how frequently? What steep penalties have been put in place for schools that default?

      As a parent I want to see action and not hear words! In a country where a nurse can flee quarantine and a primary contact with the index case can evade detection, with both of them traveling across state lines, I demand action from government before our children are asked to return to school. It’s not enough to ask “Ministries of Education in the 36 states of Nigeria to appoint desk officers on Ebola before resumption or that they should ensure that at least two staff in each school (public and private) are trained by appropriate health workers on how to handle any suspected case of Ebola, should in case there’s one or workers should embark on immediate sensitization of teaching and non-teaching staff in schools on preventive measures”, ALL STATE MINISTRIES OF EDUCATION and SCHOOLS (PUBLIC & PRIVATE) MUST be MANDATED and SUFFICENTLY EQUIPPED with ALL RESOURCES to ensure Ebola virus does not hit our children.

      In Nigeria, it’s just schools that are closed. In some other African countries, communities are

    • cynthykoko

      September 19, 2014 at 12:42 pm

      I Love this article so much cos it opened my eyes to so many things…. Now i think my children will have to wait till a solution is found

  9. leeleo

    September 18, 2014 at 8:10 am

    I thought they said no Ebola cases in Nigeria, is Rivers State not part of Nigeria. I tire o!

  10. ducii

    September 18, 2014 at 8:59 am

    Nobody should take this report seriously, this is just a political ploy, the APC lead Rivers State government is playing politics with peoples lives. They want to go against the Federal Government resumption date that is all.

  11. pretti

    September 18, 2014 at 9:34 am

    all this report are lies

  12. jason Ibrahim

    September 19, 2014 at 5:02 am

    @suwa I’ve perused the said article a dozen times and am sorry to say it holds no water whatsoever, the so called concerned mother’s arguments are base less and unfounded without empirical facts and evidence. She has obviously (ie if at all it is a “mother”) relied on what she has been told on television, radio and other information disseminating mediums. That argument is a prima facie case of argumentum ad misericordiam (ie an appeal to emotion and pity) and what homework is she talking about? The one which teacher gave or is she now a teacher too? Be Wise Nigerians have Glorified the Ebola Virus with all this reportage on it. Yes it is Deadly but if all facets of life have not been grounded then why schools?…I must at this juncture doff my hat for the Governor of Lagos State who stands for re-opening schools immediately as he has been briefed on the eminent pros and cons of that action. I understand your need to be an activist (everyone in Nigeria now is) but rely on facts and figures saving yourself the embarrassment of making a total mockery of your education and your ability to assimilate and process information which by your reliance on the aforementioned article has been called to question. Again an article should be enough even for a fool.

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