Ebola In P/Harcourt: Remain Calm, Everything Is Under Control, Says Amaechi

Rotimi-AmaechiGovernor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State yesterday urged people of the state not to panic over the death of Dr. Iyke Sam Enemuo from the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD).

Amaechi, in a special broadcast on the dreaded disease, admonished them to remain calm, saying his administration in conjunction with relevant stakeholders, had put measures in place to contain the disease.

The Rivers governor said: “My dear people of Rivers State, we woke up this (yesterday) morning to the sad confirmation that the dreaded Ebola Virus Disease has claimed its first victim in Rivers State. Dr. Iyke Sam Enemua died last Friday, August 22, 2014, as a result of what was suspected to be Ebola Virus Disease.

“The State Ministry of Health, on becoming aware of the conditions of his death, immediately commenced investigations and contact tracing. As at today (yesterday), about 100 contacts from a hotel, patients of Dr. Enemua and patients of the hospital, where the late Enemua was treated, until his demise, have been identified and restricted. The different locations are being decontaminated.

“Our investigations reveal that an employee of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) on the team that received the late Dr. Patrick Sawyer, the Liberian-American, who died of ebola haemorrhagic disease in Lagos, Nigeria, made a trip to Port Harcourt, where he checked into a hotel and met with Dr. Iyke Sam Enemua.

“About a week after his departure, Dr. Iyke Enemua took ill and was rushed to a hospital, with symptoms of fever, diarrhea and vomiting. In the course of treatment, the managing physician became suspicious and took blood samples for investigation. A few days later, Dr. Iyke Enemua died, precisely on August 22, 2014. Dr. Iyke Enemua’s widow, who is also a medical doctor and who cared for him during his illness, has taken ill. She is being quarantined. The diplomat, who was seen by the late Dr. Iyke Enemuo, is alive and well”.

Amaechi, who is also the Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF) chairman, urged all Rivers people to go about their normal businesses, stating that the state government was doing everything possible to contain the effects and spread of the Ebola virus.

He assured that his administration has the material and human resources needed to fight and defeat the deadly virus.

Amaechi said: “Officials from the Federal Ministry of Health and other international agencies are already here (in Rivers State), working with the state’s Ministry of Health, to contain and combat the virus.

“We must all endeavour to adhere to basic hygiene rules. Wash your hands regularly with soap and water and avoid unnecessary body contacts like shaking of hands.

“Anyone with symptoms indicative of diarrhea, high fever, vomiting, abdominal pain, excessive weakness of the body and unexplained bleeding, should call these our ebola emergency numbers: 08167733939, 07036321076, 08033124314 or our state emergency call centre: 112”.