By Paul Obi
Abuja — As part of the strategy to prevent the spread of Ebola virus to Nigeria, the federal government yesterday affirmed the continuous screening of passengers across the nation’s airports
· The Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, who paid an unscheduled visit to the Port-Health Service (PHS) stand of the Nnamdi International Airport Abuja, explained that PHS officials must remain vigilant and alert in ensuring that all passengers are screened and checked in order to keep Ebola out of Nigeria.
· This came as concern mount over Nigeria’s Super Eagles match against the Democratic Republic of Congo. DR Congo has been caught with Ebola virus since April this year, with about 30 persons affected.
· There were several calls for the postponement of the football match which was played yesterday given the spread of Ebola virus in DR Congo as a means to prevent the spread of Ebola to Nigeria.
·Speaking during the tour of PHS facilities at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Minister of Health, Adewole, said: “The visit was part of the Minister’s effort to ensuring that screening measures are heightened and health security infrastructures are strengthened particularly at all ports of entry.
· “It was also to allay the fear entertained by the public that medical teams were not on hand at points of entry to screen and monitor movement into the country to keep the recent Ebola outbreak in DRC at bay.”
· While watching passengers through a monitoring and screening gadget as they arrived via African World Airline from Accra, Ghana, Adewole stated that the Federal Ministry of Health and her agencies are committed to ensuring the health and safety of all Nigerians by making sure no disease including Ebola was imported into the country.
· The minister added that Nigeria is better prepared to effectively prevent, detect and respond to infectious disease at all times.
· Reaffirming the on-going screening activity, the Airport Manager, Mr. Sanni Mahmud, stressed that “screening of passengers had not stopped at any time as it is an essential element of security checks put in place to safe-guard the country from diseases afflicting other countries.”