Ebola: Anxiety at Lagos airport over suspected victim

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In Nigeria
Aug 4th, 2014
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There was anxiety at the arrival hall of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, on Monday as port health and aviation security officials engaged in arguments on whether an alleged inbound passenger suspected to be infected with the deadly Ebola Virus should be allowed into the country.

The passenger’s status was said to have been discovered on arrival by officials of the Port Health Service attached to the terminal.

The suspected victim, according to a source close to the Port Health Service, arrived the country aboard one of Nigerian domestic airlines from the West African coast.

The source claimed that a hot argument ensued between the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) personnel at the airport and the health officials over an attempt to allow the infected passenger come into the country while another party insisted that he should be sent back to his point of departure.

The source, however, revealed that since the discovery of the disease in Nigeria about two weeks ago, port health officials at the airport had deployed equipment meant for screening of passengers arriving the country especially from the West Africa sub region.

“I don’t know specifically where the plane came from, but the patient was discovered during screening of inbound passengers by the port health officials at the airport. As at now, we don’t know what to do with him. Some of the officials want him return to base while others are insisting that as a Nigerian, he has the right to arrive into the country.

“The aircraft probably came from Accra, Ghana. I just want our officials to be careful with the way they interact with some of the passengers,” the source added.

When contacted, the General Manager, Corporate Communications, FAAN, Mr. Yakubu Dati, dismissed the report, saying there was nothing like that.

 

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