Ebola: 39 foreigners arrested in Lagos hotels
OFFICERS of the Nigeria Police, the Nigerian Immigration Services and health officials at the weekend collaborated to arrest 39 foreigners in two hotels on Lagos Island.
The arrest of the foreigners, it was gathered, was to prevent possible spread of the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD).
The foreigners, 35 from the Democratic Republic of Congo (formerly Zaire) and four Senegalese were arrested by security agents at Benin Hotel and Guest House on Atere Street in Lagos Island.
Eye witnesses said the arrest followed a tip-off by some residents of the area to Area A Command, Lion Building, Lagos.
The residents were said to have expressed fears that the activities of the foreigners, mostly cohabiting together, could lead to the spread of EVD in the area.
On receiving the report, the Area Commander and Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), Imohimi Edgal, reportedly contacted immigration and health officials who stormed the hotel where the foreigners were placed under arrest.
A police source who spoke to newsmen said the immigration officials will determine if the suspects are legally residing in the country.
The source said the health officials will determine their health status to know if they actually have the dreaded disease or not.
Following the arrest, all hotels in the area have been placed under close surveillance while the residents were told to report any suspicious persons or activities to the police.
Speaking to newsmen, a resident of the area, Femi Ajasa, said they became suspicious and alerted the police following the mass movements of the foreigners into the hotels since the outbreak of the Ebola virus.
While commending the Area A Command for their swift response, which led to the arrest of the suspects, he said the residents suspected that some persons were receiving treatment in the hotels rooms, a development which made them alert authorities.
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