Two persons have tested positive to the Ebola Virus Disease, EVD, in the Nigerian oil city of Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
Minister for Health, Professor Onyebuchi Chukwu, has confirmed it.
Chukwu told journalists, today, Thursday, in Abuja, that one of the sufferers, a staff of the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, evaded the ministry’s surveillance team and traveled to Port Harcourt. He said a manhunt for him in the city was unsuccessful, and by the time he found his way to Lagos, he was already freed of the disease. In spite of his recovery, the minister said laboratory tests confirmed he had had the disease.
Chukwu said of the ECOWAS staff: “Even though presently he does not have EVD but further laboratory tests indicate that he had suffered EVD.
“This case would have been of no further interest since he had completed the 21 days of surveillance without any other issue, but for the fact that the doctor who treated him died last Friday, 22nd August, 2014,” he said.
The minister said the deceased doctor’s widow has shown symptoms consistent with EVD and has been quarantined.
He stated that a strong team of doctors has been deployed to Port Harcourt to work with the health authorities in the state.
The ECOWAS staff was said to have had contacts with the index case, the Liberian-American Patrick Sawyer, claimed to have traveled into the country for a summit of the West African multilateral organisation.