That name shall forever live on in the minds of Nigerians everywhere.
That dude just had to come to Nigeria and bring a little something extra with him. If you’ve not been reading the news, the arrival of Patrick Sawyer in Nigeria ushered in the disease that is commonly called Ebola.
Quoting Wikipedia in an attempt to define Ebola as a disease,
“Ebola virus disease (EVD) or Ebola hemorrhagic fever (EHF) is a disease that affects humans and primates caused by the Ebola virus and three other closely related viruses in the genus (group of related viruses) ebolavirus. It is a hemorrhagic fever, meaning that victims may bleed inside the body or externally (scary) and it has one of the highest case fatality rates (very scary) of any disease, killing between 50% and 90% of victims. Symptoms typically start eight to 10 days after contracting the virus, with a fever, sore throat, muscle pain, and headaches. Typically nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea follow, along with decreased functioning of the liver and kidneys. Hemorrhaging may also begin around this time. There is no specific treatment for the disease (worst news ever).”
“A total of 1,848 suspected cases with 1,013 deaths have been reported by the World Health Organization as of 9 August 2014 of which 1,176 cases and 660 deaths have been laboratory confirmed to be Ebola (Please not that this is 141 days after the WHO officially reported the outbreak as the Ebola Virus, although research says the first case was as far back as December, 2013)”
“Efforts are ongoing to develop a vaccine (hope); however, none yet exists (maybe not).”
So far 69 people who were thought to have been in close contact/proximity with Patrick Sawyer have been placed under closed observation while 2 cases have been confirmed (one is currently being treated and the other is dead).
However, my rant (or whatever you want to call this) is because of the lethargic response of our government on the issue.
We all know how The Federal Government is when it comes to matters that doesn’t speak money, case in point; the Chibok girls who were, supposedly, kidnapped by the radical sect known as Boko Haram (today marks the 120th day since they’ve been, allegedly, gone) I use the word “Allegedly” and “Supposedly” because I don’t believe that story but I , reluctantly, agree to the truth of the story since almost all Nigerians do. I’m of the opinion that 365 days will come and pass and there will be no good news regarding the search and recovery of those girls, that’s if they are actually gone.
But I digress.
Take at look at the response of our co-west African country, Ghana, to the outbreak. They have banned almost all flights coming into their borders from Liberia, Sierra Leona, Guinea and, most recently, Nigeria. They have also built three Isolation centers even though all the suspected cases of the disease have been negative.
Our dear country had to wait until someone died within its borders before they knew they had to start making plans for the virus. They had not even brought up a budget (which seems to be their specialty) for battling any possible outbreak only recently announcing a 1.9 billion naira approval for the initial battling of the disease.
My only question is; For how long does our government plan on being reactive when other governments are always maintaining a proactive stance on issues that threaten the living of their citizens?