Udora Orizu in Abuja
The House of Representatives has mandated the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) to ensure intensive observation and check on travel protocols for inbound passengers from Ebola red-flag countries, as well as setting up a national response to control the likely emergence and spread of the virus in order to spare Nigeria the brunt of the pandemic.
The House also mandated the Federal Ministry of Health to immediately activate strategies to be implemented in monitoring adherence to Ebola guidelines and ensure residents continue to comply with all advisories aimed at curtailing the likely development of the virus.
The resolutions of the lawmakers followed the adoption of a motion of urgent public importance sponsored by Hon. Dachung Bagos at the plenary yesterday.
Moving the motion, Bagos said the House is aware that on September 20, 2022, Uganda health authorities declared an outbreak of Ebola disease, caused by Sudan virus, following laboratory confirmation of a patient from a village in Madudu sub-county, Mubende district in central Uganda.
He said the House is also aware that the World Health Organisation (WHO) raised concern that in the absence of licenced vaccines and therapeutics for prevention and treatment of Sudan virus disease, the risk of potential serious public health impact is high.
The lawmaker noted that investigations were ongoing to determine the scope of the outbreak and the possibility of spreading and importation of cases to neighbouring countries cannot be ruled out at this stage.
He opined that Nigeria has reason to be warier at the moment as the deadly virus can get into the country through the borders or travelers coming into Nigeria for business or any reason, and could become dominant if unchecked.
Bagos said: “Further aware that according to the information currently available, the overall risk has been assessed as high at national level considering the confirmed Sudan virus and the lack of an authorised vaccine, and the possibility that the event started three weeks before the identification of the index case and several transmission chains have not been tracked. We are worried that the Ebola virus is giving a lot of people concern around the world as it was the variant that gave a lot of infections and fatalities.”
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