The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, on Friday,
allayed fears of possible spread of the dreaded Ebola viral
disease to Nigeria from the Democratic Republic of Congo,
DRC, through the country’s football contingents.
Earlier this month, 17 persons died in the DRC due to the
reemergence of the Ebola viral disease in the country.
However, the Super Eagles are billed to play an international
friendly against the DRC in Uyo on May 28.
But speaking to journalists in Abuja on Friday, the Chief
Executive Officer of NCDC, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, told
journalists in Abuja that the federal government was on top
of the situation.
He said that the government had put measures in place to
educate and screen both players and officials coming from
the DRC to ensure they do not import the Ebola virus into
Ihekweazu added that it was needless to impose travel
restrictions on the Congolese football team since most of
them were based in Europe and have had very little contact
with the DRC recently.
He said “The Nigeria, DRC match is a very unique situation,
because we know the DRC football team are coming. They
will be screened for Ebola even before they leave the DRC.
“They are a very confined group. We have the list of players
and officials coming in. We are already educating them. So,
the international friendly game is the least of NCDC’s
“There is very little risk associated with this game. Mist of
the players of DRC like their Super Eagles’ counterpart play
in Europe. So, actually, they have had very little contact with
“The key thing is that we are doing everything we need to do
to ensure we prevent the outbreak of the Ebola viral disease
in Nigeria. Our focus mainly is on planning, preparation,
education, and screening rather than travel restrictions.
“We are more worried about that passenger who nobody
knows about; who is traveling on his own; and who we don’t
know where is coming from.”