A former Commissioner for Health in Lagos State, Dr Jide Idris, on Thursday urged the Federal Government to take adequate precautionary measures against the return of the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD).

Idris gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos against the backdrop of the reported return of the disease in Liberia and Sierra Leone.

He also called for more vigilance at the nation’s border posts to prevent the entry of people who might be infected with the virus.

“Everybody is talking about Ebola, Ebola Ebola. We are not out of the woods yet because that main public health infrastructure is still not there.

“We are on the way, but we are not there yet. So, we cannot rest on our oars, there is a resurgence of Ebola in some of those countries now, so we still need to sit up in this country.

“Enlighten the public, all those things we were saying, hand washing, good personal hygiene, all those things people need to imbibe. We take charge of our own health.

“Government has a role to play; the people themselves have a role to play. So, these are the issues.

“The health sector is complex, but without it, we cannot have economic progress. Whether we like it or not, the people have to be healthy before they can be very productive.“

The World Health Organisation (WHO) had on Oct. 20 formally declared Nigeria free of the ebola virus after 42 days without a new case of infection.

The late Mr Patrick Sawyer, an American-Liberian, had imported the disease to Nigeria on July 22 when he flew into Lagos and tested positive to the disease just two hours after arrival.

He was treated at the First Consultants Hospital, Lagos, where he infected two doctors and other health workers, who tried to stop him from leaving the hospital.


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