AUGUST – The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) on Thursday held a one-day workshop on Nigeria’s preparedness for the 2014 hajj to sensitise intending pilgrims against contact and spread of Ebola virus.
Speaking at the occasion, Dr. Haliru Al-Hassan, the Minister of State for Health, said the Federal Government was committed in curtailing and eradicating the disease from Nigeria.
Al-Hassan said Ebola was imported to Nigeria, adding that government’s pro-active steps had helped in reducing and restricting it to Lagos.
He said Nigeria enjoyed support of partners like the World Health Organisation (WHO), and the United State Centre for Disease Control (US-CDC) in curtailing the spread.
He advised Nigerians to maintain an increased hygienic life style to prevent contact with the disease.
“Ebola is an imported infection to Nigeria and government is doing its best to curtail its spread. [eap_ad_1] “Presently, it is confined in Lagos where about 10 confirmed cases have been recorded out of which three have died, ‘’ he said.
He said government had done “contact –tracing’’ to ensure that people who had contact with known Ebola victims were traced and quarantined.
He said the disease had become more harmful to health workers than to the general public and advised NAHCON to ensure proper screening of intending pilgrims.
Earlier, Malam Mohammed Bello, the Chairman of the commission, commended the Federal Ministry of Health and WHO for supporting NAHCON in the area of disease control among intending pilgrims.
He said the workshop was organized by the health ministry in collaboration with NAHCON to ensure that the over 60,000 Nigerian intending pilgrims to the 2014 hajj were properly screened.
Dr Mary Stevens, a representative of WHO, said WHO was actively supportive to Nigerian government in containing Ebola outbreak and commended NAHCON and the ministry of health for the workshop.
Mrs Katherine Avery, a representative of the United States Centre for Disease Control (USCDC), said the centre was actively supporting the Nigerian government to check the disease.
“The US-CDC associates itself fully with efforts of the Nigerian health ministry in controlling this situation.
“We are committed to saving lives and protecting people and will continue to support Nigeria in the control of Ebola and other diseases,’’ she assured. (NAN)