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Nigerian Government Seizes N200 Million-worth ‘Fake’ Roofing Sheets In Uyo

29 June 2019 - 3:46am


 

The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) says it has seized substandard aluminum sheets worth over N200 million from various aluminum companies in Uyo.

The Director, Inspectorate and Compliance Directorate, Mr. Obiora Manafa, disclosed to journalists on Friday in Uyo.

Manafa stated: “We are here to evacuate substandard roofing sheets found here. We have aluminum roofing sheets and galvanized roofing sheets.

“The minimum thickness of aluminum roofing sheets is 0.4 millilitres.

“There are a lot of consequences using the roofing sheets because anyone buying it will not have value for his money.

“Once you buy it, any little wind will blow your roof off. These are the reasons we are trying to discourage some Nigerians from importing substandard products.

“People go out there, import these products knowing full well that Nigerian standard is 0.4 millilitre yet they bring it in,” he said.

Manafa reiterated that the aim was to discourage the importation of substandard products into the country and to save the hard-earned resources of Nigerians.

He said that the ongoing exercise would be carried out in every part of the country and warned the perpetrators to desist from the practice.

He explained that the minimum standard required of an aluminum sheet was 0.4mm instead of 0.25mm, which some companies use for the production of roofing sheets.

The director also urged the Federal Government to return SON to the ports to check the influx of substandard products because some of the products come into the country without SON’s Conformity Assessment Programme (SONCAP) certificate.

Manafa advised would-be buyers to either go with qualified engineers to buy the product or go with the required measuring instrument to verify the standard length and width of the sheet they intended to buy.

He urged would-be buyers to consult any of the state offices of SON for guidance.

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BREAKING: Ondo Statistician General Office Gutted By Fire

29 June 2019 - 3:31am




 

Ondo State's office of the Statistician General has been gutted by fire.

The statistician general's office which is a metre away from the Governor's Office in Alagbaka, Akure was razed at the midnight of Saturday.

Our correspondent reports that the items razed by the inferno included - files and confidential documents electronics, furniture among others. 

A staff of the office, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, told SaharaReporters that the cause of the fire could not be ascertained as of press time.

"With what we noticed this morning, it shows the inferno happening at the midnight because of the extent of the damages at the office. 

"Although, we noticed the incident around 6 am today (Saturday) and as at now no one can ascertain the cause of the fire," he said.

Details later...

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Categories: audio

BREAKING: Ondo Statistician General Office Gutted By Fire

29 June 2019 - 3:31am




 

Ondo State's office of the Statistician General has been gutted by fire.

The statistician general's office which is a metre away from the Governor's Office in Alagbaka, Akure was razed at the midnight of Saturday.

Our correspondent reports that the items razed by the inferno included - files and confidential documents electronics, furniture among others. 

A staff of the office, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, told SaharaReporters that the cause of the fire could not be ascertained as of press time.

"With what we noticed this morning, it shows the inferno happening at the midnight because of the extent of the damages at the office. 

"Although, we noticed the incident around 6 am today (Saturday) and as at now no one can ascertain the cause of the fire," he said.

Details later...

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Gunmen Kill University Worker In Calabar, Snatch Wife's Phone

29 June 2019 - 3:18am



Mr. Bassey Ekpenyong Inyang, an employee of the Cross River University of Technology, has been shot dead by gunmen.

Inyang was said to have been ambushed by the gunmen right outside his house, along New Airport Road in Calabar-South, as he and his wife were returning from a church service.

According to an eyewitness, the gunmen came in a bus and wasted no time in shooting the deceased as they saw him. The eyewitness said Inyang died right on the spot.

They snatched the late Inyang’s wife phone before escaping.

 The reason for the murder of  Inyang could not be ascertained as of the time of filing this report.

Irene Ugbo, Police Public Relations Officer, DSP, who confirmed the incident said investigations had started concerning the killing of the university worker.

The late Bassey was the chief architect in the Works and Physical Planning Unit of the university.
 

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Gunmen Kill University Worker In Calabar, Snatch Wife's Phone

29 June 2019 - 3:18am



Mr. Bassey Ekpenyong Inyang, an employee of the Cross River University of Technology, has been shot dead by gunmen.

Inyang was said to have been ambushed by the gunmen right outside his house, along New Airport Road in Calabar-South, as he and his wife were returning from a church service.

According to an eyewitness, the gunmen came in a bus and wasted no time in shooting the deceased as they saw him. The eyewitness said Inyang died right on the spot.

They snatched the late Inyang’s wife phone before escaping.

 The reason for the murder of  Inyang could not be ascertained as of the time of filing this report.

Irene Ugbo, Police Public Relations Officer, DSP, who confirmed the incident said investigations had started concerning the killing of the university worker.

The late Bassey was the chief architect in the Works and Physical Planning Unit of the university.
 

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Flu Kills More Than 200 People In Australia As Government Warns Worse Yet To Come

29 June 2019 - 3:16am



Flu has killed more than 200 people in Australia and the country’s government has warned that the worst is yet to come.

“The flu season is already making its impact felt around the country, with more patients presenting to NSW emergency departments so far in 2019 than in any other six-month period,” Vicky Sheppeard, NSW’s director of Communicable Disease, said in a statement.

According to data released separately by Australia’s six states and two territories, at least 228 people have already been killed by the flu and more than 100,000 have been infected compared to only 58,824 in 2018.

“We’re having one of our worst seasons so far… we expect the peak will come between July and September,” Richard Kidd, chair of the Australian Medical Association Council of General Practice, told the Australian Associated Press on Saturday (June 29).

“Influenza is nothing like the common cold. It’s serious and can be lethal.”

More than 100 deaths and 49,000 cases have been reported in New South Wales (NSW) and Victoria, Australia’s two biggest states, since January alone.

In South Australia, where the population is approximately one-quarter of the size of Victoria, there have been 18,500 confirmed cases of influenza and 44 deaths.

The outbreak is happening despite more than 11 million people having being vaccinated against the virus under a programme subsidised by the government.

James Day, a 43-year-old Victorian man, had the vaccination but died from the flu only one week after being diagnosed, leaving behind a wife and a young son.
 

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Categories: audio

Flu Kills More Than 200 People In Australia As Government Warns Worse Yet To Come

29 June 2019 - 3:16am



Flu has killed more than 200 people in Australia and the country’s government has warned that the worst is yet to come.

“The flu season is already making its impact felt around the country, with more patients presenting to NSW emergency departments so far in 2019 than in any other six-month period,” Vicky Sheppeard, NSW’s director of Communicable Disease, said in a statement.

According to data released separately by Australia’s six states and two territories, at least 228 people have already been killed by the flu and more than 100,000 have been infected compared to only 58,824 in 2018.

“We’re having one of our worst seasons so far… we expect the peak will come between July and September,” Richard Kidd, chair of the Australian Medical Association Council of General Practice, told the Australian Associated Press on Saturday (June 29).

“Influenza is nothing like the common cold. It’s serious and can be lethal.”

More than 100 deaths and 49,000 cases have been reported in New South Wales (NSW) and Victoria, Australia’s two biggest states, since January alone.

In South Australia, where the population is approximately one-quarter of the size of Victoria, there have been 18,500 confirmed cases of influenza and 44 deaths.

The outbreak is happening despite more than 11 million people having being vaccinated against the virus under a programme subsidised by the government.

James Day, a 43-year-old Victorian man, had the vaccination but died from the flu only one week after being diagnosed, leaving behind a wife and a young son.
 

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Nigerian Government Warns Citizens Of Carrying More Than $3,000 To Ethiopia

29 June 2019 - 2:49am


Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

 

The Ethiopian Customs and Revenue Authority has stepped up its moves to commence seizure of foreign currencies and valuables in excess of $3,000.

Mr Friday Akpan, spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs disclosed this in a statement.

Akpan said the rule on the forfeiture of undeclared valuables applies to passengers travelling to Ethiopia or transiting, including the prosecution of offenders of money laundering in line with Ethiopian laws.

He urged Nigerian travellers to the country to take note of the development and adhere strictly to avoid undue embarrassment at their airport.

Akpan said Nigeria’s embassy in Addis Ababa was engaging Ethiopian authorities to secure the release of undeclared monies seized from Nigerians.

In January, the embassy and the Nigerian mission in Ethiopia had earlier informed Nigerian travellers on the seizure plans of excess currencies by the Ethiopian authorities.

The information prior was aimed at safeguarding Nigerian travellers from having their monies and valuables confiscated.

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Nigerian Government Warns Citizens Of Carrying More Than $3,000 To Ethiopia

29 June 2019 - 2:49am


Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

 

The Ethiopian Customs and Revenue Authority has stepped up its moves to commence seizure of foreign currencies and valuables in excess of $3,000.

Mr Friday Akpan, spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs disclosed this in a statement.

Akpan said the rule on the forfeiture of undeclared valuables applies to passengers travelling to Ethiopia or transiting, including the prosecution of offenders of money laundering in line with Ethiopian laws.

He urged Nigerian travellers to the country to take note of the development and adhere strictly to avoid undue embarrassment at their airport.

Akpan said Nigeria’s embassy in Addis Ababa was engaging Ethiopian authorities to secure the release of undeclared monies seized from Nigerians.

In January, the embassy and the Nigerian mission in Ethiopia had earlier informed Nigerian travellers on the seizure plans of excess currencies by the Ethiopian authorities.

The information prior was aimed at safeguarding Nigerian travellers from having their monies and valuables confiscated.

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Categories: audio

Gunmen Kidnap Porole, Leader Of Movement For The Survival Of The Ogoni People

29 June 2019 - 2:27am


 

Anthony Porole, the secretary-general of the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP), has been kidnapped.

Porole was kidnapped around 8.30 pm on Friday in his Biara-Ogoni compound in Gokana Local Government Area of Rivers State.

His abductors were said to have invaded his compound shooting sporadically to scare away neighbours before taking him away.

MOSOP, this morning, through its Publicity Secretary, Sunny Zorvah, stated that members of the umbrella organization of Ogoni people were saddened over the kidnap while calling for Porole’s immediate and unconditional release.

Zorvah said: ‘MOSOP also calls on the security agencies to be on the trail of the kidnappers and ensure their immediate arrest.

“It is callous and undeserving that a man who has committed his life in serving his people will be treated in this manner.

“Enough is enough of this criminal, uncivilized, barbaric and retrogressive act.”

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Gunmen Kidnap Porole, Leader Of Movement For The Survival Of The Ogoni People

29 June 2019 - 2:27am


 

Anthony Porole, the secretary-general of the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP), has been kidnapped.

Porole was kidnapped around 8.30 pm on Friday in his Biara-Ogoni compound in Gokana Local Government Area of Rivers State.

His abductors were said to have invaded his compound shooting sporadically to scare away neighbours before taking him away.

MOSOP, this morning, through its Publicity Secretary, Sunny Zorvah, stated that members of the umbrella organization of Ogoni people were saddened over the kidnap while calling for Porole’s immediate and unconditional release.

Zorvah said: ‘MOSOP also calls on the security agencies to be on the trail of the kidnappers and ensure their immediate arrest.

“It is callous and undeserving that a man who has committed his life in serving his people will be treated in this manner.

“Enough is enough of this criminal, uncivilized, barbaric and retrogressive act.”

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Buhari, Osinbajo, Lawan, and Gbajabiamila Should Make Public Their Assets –PDP

29 June 2019 - 2:19am


Buhari shakes Lawan

Buhari shakes Lawan THISDAYLIVE

 

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has called on President Mohammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo to publicly declare their assets.

The party made the call in a statement issued by its Deputy National Publicity Secretary, Diran Odeyemi.

“We are of the opinion that Buhari, Osinbajo, Lawan, and Gbajabiamila should declare openly their assets to allow Nigerians to further see how much wealth they have acquired since joining the government.

“The party, therefore, called on all high-ranking political office holders to waive the caveat placed on the Code of Conduct Bureau and make their asset known to Nigerians,” Odeyemi said.

According to him, the call is important as the Code of Conduct Bureau is insisting that it could not release details of assets of the President and other top officials without their consent.

Odeyemi said that public declaration of the assets would go a long way to convince Nigerians that the national leaders are indeed partners in the fight against corruption.

He recalled that former Chief Justice of the Federation, Walter Onnoghen was prosecuted for not declaring in full his asset.

He advised that other top government officials should submit themselves for public scrutiny through a public declaration of their assets.

Odeyemi urged Buhari and other top government officials to be more coordinated and exhibit transparency not only in fighting graft but in their dealings with Nigerians.

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Categories: audio

Buhari, Osinbajo, Lawan, and Gbajabiamila Should Make Public Their Assets –PDP

29 June 2019 - 2:19am


Buhari shakes Lawan

Buhari shakes Lawan THISDAYLIVE

 

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has called on President Mohammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo to publicly declare their assets.

The party made the call in a statement issued by its Deputy National Publicity Secretary, Diran Odeyemi.

“We are of the opinion that Buhari, Osinbajo, Lawan, and Gbajabiamila should declare openly their assets to allow Nigerians to further see how much wealth they have acquired since joining the government.

“The party, therefore, called on all high-ranking political office holders to waive the caveat placed on the Code of Conduct Bureau and make their asset known to Nigerians,” Odeyemi said.

According to him, the call is important as the Code of Conduct Bureau is insisting that it could not release details of assets of the President and other top officials without their consent.

Odeyemi said that public declaration of the assets would go a long way to convince Nigerians that the national leaders are indeed partners in the fight against corruption.

He recalled that former Chief Justice of the Federation, Walter Onnoghen was prosecuted for not declaring in full his asset.

He advised that other top government officials should submit themselves for public scrutiny through a public declaration of their assets.

Odeyemi urged Buhari and other top government officials to be more coordinated and exhibit transparency not only in fighting graft but in their dealings with Nigerians.

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Categories: audio

Small Trouble In Big Kano: Emir Sanusi Sacks Jumat Mosque Imam

29 June 2019 - 2:12am



Malam Muhammad Sanusi II, the Emir of Kano, has ordered the removal of Malam Salihu Muhammed, the Chief Imam of Limawa Jumat mosque in Kumbotso Local government Area of the state.
Muhammed's sack is with immediate effect.

Muhammed was accused of flouting the monarch's instructions on moon sighting and the eventual Eid prayer at the end of Ramadan fasting. The Chief Imam was said to have sighted the moon by himself and conducted his own prayer a day after that of the Emir who doubles as both traditional and spiritual head of the Emirates.

The Emir lamented that the Imam did the same thing last year and was warned against it.

Sanusi, however, said that the Chief Imam was sacked for being adamant. He added that Muhammed repeated the same action this year despite being warned against it last year.

Sanusi said he had no option but to replace him.

The sacked Imam has kept mum, refusing to comment on the matter.
 

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Categories: audio

Small Trouble In Big Kano: Emir Sanusi Sacks Jumat Mosque Imam

29 June 2019 - 2:12am



Malam Muhammad Sanusi II, the Emir of Kano, has ordered the removal of Malam Salihu Muhammed, the Chief Imam of Limawa Jumat mosque in Kumbotso Local government Area of the state.
Muhammed's sack is with immediate effect.

Muhammed was accused of flouting the monarch's instructions on moon sighting and the eventual Eid prayer at the end of Ramadan fasting. The Chief Imam was said to have sighted the moon by himself and conducted his own prayer a day after that of the Emir who doubles as both traditional and spiritual head of the Emirates.

The Emir lamented that the Imam did the same thing last year and was warned against it.

Sanusi, however, said that the Chief Imam was sacked for being adamant. He added that Muhammed repeated the same action this year despite being warned against it last year.

Sanusi said he had no option but to replace him.

The sacked Imam has kept mum, refusing to comment on the matter.
 

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Nigerian Technician Beheaded, Mutilated Body Parts Thrown On Street

29 June 2019 - 1:12am


 

A lifeless body with head and genitals severed has been found in Rivers State.

The mutilated body was said to belong to a generator repairer.

The incident happened in Choba, Obio/Akpor Local Government Area on Thursday night.

The gruesome death of the generator repairer was said to have forced the residents and business owners in the area to stay indoors.

Speaking on the condition of anonymity, an eyewitness said the victim lived and repaired generator in the area for many years and was well-known to residents.

He said the victim was simply known as 'mechanic'.

The eyewitness added that mechanic was attacked and beheaded in his house while he was with his girlfriend.

Speaking further, he said, “The mechanic was attacked inside his house very late in the night. The hoodlums shot and killed him. They cut off his head and genitals before throwing (genitals) on the street.

"The criminals also shot at the man's girlfriend, but she luckily survived. I think some people called the police; it was when the police came that they rescued the girl and took her to the hospital.

“The police also took the man's body and the severed head and genitals away with them.

Mr. Nnamdi Omoni, the state Police Public Relations Officer, confirmed the incident.

He added that apart from the generator repairer, another man who was standing beside his Toyota Sienna car was killed.

Omoni said, 'I can confirm the incident; the man that was killed by the gunmen was from Ogoja. Apart from that, the gunmen also shot a man standing beside his Toyota Sienna car.

"The man bled to death. The wife of the man (generator repairer) was injured and was rushed to the hospital where she is receiving treatment. All together two persons were killed and one person was injured by the gunmen."

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COZA's Pastor Folarin Ogunsola, Wole Soetan Knew Biodun Fatoyinbo Raped Me, Busola Dakolo Claims

29 June 2019 - 1:05am


Busola Dakolo

Busola Dakolo

 

Busola Dakolo, popular photographer and wife of musician Timi Dakolo has recounted how ministers in the Commonwealth of Zion Church (COZA), Ilorin, begged members of her family to cover up her alleged rape by Biodun Fatoyinbo, overseer of the church.

She made the revelation of the cover-up while speaking with Chude Jideonwo, co-founder of Red Media on Friday.

Dakolo said after her family found out that Fatoyinbo was abusing her sexually, they confronted him after which two ministers in the church accompanied him to beg while pinning the blame on the devil.

Fatoyinbo has since denied the allegation in a post on Instagram saying, "I have never raped before."

Dakolo said, "My brother was angry so he took a pocket knife and dragged me to His (Fatoyinbo) house. Immediately he saw my brother and I coming, he (Fatoyinbo) quickly came out of His house and said Busola! Busola! What's the matter? 

"My brother's name is Tunde, he was very mad and told Fatoyinbo, I am going to stab you and kill you, what did you do to her?

"He (Fatoyinbo) started begging saying I'm sorry, I don't know what came over me was just the devil. At that time someone was around, a minister Wole, He is the pastor of the Port Harcourt branch now. Then he wasn't a pastor, he was a minister in church like prayer minister so he said we should all go to my house.

"My brother and I went back home and then they came to our house and called another minister. He (Fatoyinbo) started begging saying he didn't know what came over him, I just stood there and couldn't say anything.

"Meanwhile the minister who was Wole Soetan and another minister Flow (Folarin Ogunsola) who is my second cousin. They talked and begged me but I wasn't listening to anything they were saying because all that was on my mind is that I cannot get back my virginity because it's been done and the way I think right now, you don't know my state.

"I told my brother then that I want to leave the church because I wasn't listening to the word anymore and I told Wole that I want to leave the church. He too when he heard said he was going to leave the church."

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Okorocha Challenges Ihedioha Over Looted Imo Vehicles, Gives Him 7 Days To Prove His Claim

29 June 2019 - 12:55am


 

Rochas Okorocha, the immediate past governor of Imo State, has said that he and his wife didn’t take away 67 government vehicles as alleged by the committee set up by his successor, Governor Emeka Ihedioha, to recover movable government assets of the state looted by the appointees of the immediate past administration.

A statement issued in Owerri by Sam Onwuemeodo, media aide to Okorocha, said that the ex-governor was being blackmailed.

The statement read: “We challenge Governor Emeka Ihedioha and his appointees to publish the list and particulars of these 67 vehicles and the details of the N50bn the former governor and the wife made away with vis-à-vis other items thereto. And we give them seven days to do the publication or bend their heads downward in shame.

“We also challenge them to publish the properties the former appointees left, either as a group or as individuals. The burden to publish evidence of all these claims is now on Governor Ihedioha and his appointees.

“We equally want to ask that they harmonize their claims because almost all the key appointees of the WhatsApp and Facebook government in the state have made their diverse claims on these issues, to the extent that nobody knows who among them should be believed. They should harmonize their claims before the publication.

“The governor himself had made his own claim talking about cars and N70bn taken away. The chief of staff of the governor had equally claimed that the former governor left with 31 vehicles and about N40 billion.”

He urged Nigerians to ignore the state officials until they publish what they had claimed, “since the burden or the yoke of proof is always on the neck of the accuser.”

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Tinubu 2023 Presidential Ambition: Ohanaeze Chief Urges APC National Leader To Be Less Ambitious, Controversial

29 June 2019 - 12:26am


 

Chuks Ibegbu, the Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the apex Igbo socio-cultural organization, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has asked Bola Tinubu, a national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), to jettison his purported 2023 presidential ambition.

Ibegbu, who made the group’s position known in an interview with reporters on Friday, in Umuahia, the Abia State capital, urged the ex-Lagos state governor to rather form a non-governmental organization (NGO), to assist poor Nigerians.

It will be recalled that Senator Adeseye Ogunlewe, former Minister of Works, had declared Bola Tinubu was the best person to succeed President Muhammadu Buhari in 2023.

The former minister, who recently dumped the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) said he was going to throw his weight behind the former governor to emerge president in 2023.

“I have been reading and watching a lot of comments about it. I believe 2023 should be thrown open. Nobody should be shut out. There is nothing wrong about South-west showing interest. We are talking about democracy,” said Ogunlewe.

However, Ibegbu said, “This is the time for him and other Nigerians that made their wealth solely from Nigeria's politics, to pay back to the society what they milked directly and indirectly. I wonder why and how Tinubu could nurse such ambition when the South East and the third leg of Nigeria is yet to occupy the position.

“I laud Tinubu’s courage and efforts to deepen the democratic space from the June 12 days, but it appears diminishing return is now setting in. I think it’s high time for him to help build an equitable and just Nigeria.

“He should be less controversial and less ambitious, so that, those who cherish his doggedness will not abandon him in the years ahead. Let him listen to the voices of wisdom from Yoruba land. You know our Yoruba brothers are known as arbiters of fairness and justice.”

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Ebola: Death Toll In DR Congo Rises To 1,540, Says WHO

29 June 2019 - 12:22am


Health workers carry out the body of a patient with unconfirmed Ebola virus on August 22, 2018 in Mangina, near Beni, in the North Kivu province

Health workers carry out the body of a patient with unconfirmed Ebola virus on August 22, 2018 in Mangina, near Beni, in the North Kivu province AFP

The death toll in the latest outbreak of Ebola in the Democratic Republic of the Congo has risen to 1,540, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).

In an update on Friday, the world health body said 2,284 people had been infected since the outbreak in the country’s Ituri and North Kivu provinces nearly 11 months ago.

However, vital work of tracing people infected with the deadly virus is progressing, in spite of evidence of “several” massacres in the affected area earlier this month, the organization said.

In spite of the insecurity, WHO insisted that frontline workers were doing all they could to tackle Ebola in North-east DRC.

“We had 637 people who survived the disease, and I think this is important,” Dr. Ibrahima Fall, WHO Assistant Director-General for Emergency Response, told newsmen in Geneva, according to a statement.

He noted that around 90 people were currently receiving treatment for Ebola virus disease infection, while new cases had dropped from 106 two weeks ago, to 79 last week.

At the same time, the UN human rights office, OHCHR, announced that a “robust” probe found that 117 people had been killed in “several massacres” involving multiple villages in gold-rich Ituri, between June 10 and June 13.

“The investigative team confirmed that at least 94 people had been killed in Djugu territory and 23 in Mahagi territory, including a yet to be an undetermined number of women and children.

“Some of the victims were beheaded. Homes and warehouses were burned down after being looted.

“The ferocity and scorched-earth nature of the attacks suggest the assailants intended to prevent survivors from being able to return to their villages,” OHCHR spokesperson, Marta Hurtado, said.

Hurtado was quoted as saying that most of the victims belonged to the Hema community, while the remaining ones were Alur people.

She added that the attackers were reportedly from the Lendu community, echoing an earlier alert from the UN refugee agency, UNHCR.

UNHCR had earlier reported that thousands of people displaced by violence had arrived in Uganda this month, with an average of 311 people crossing the border daily, double the number for May.

Fall explained that major urban centres of Butembo and Katwa were now seeing only “sporadic” cases of infection, thanks to full access.

He, however, cautioned that in Beni, a large town in North Kivu, Ebola had claimed nine lives since Monday.

Contact tracing there and other preventative work was slowed earlier this week amid attacks by taxi drivers who were upset about the death of a colleague who sought help too late, according to him.

Turning to remote areas, Fall confirmed that the “very volatile” security situation had complicated the WHO’s work to tackle “a new hotspot” in Mabalako and Mandima.

“The outbreak started there last year and spread to other regions, so it’s important to break the vicious cycle, to contain very quickly the situation in Mabalako and Mandima, where we have more than 55 percent of the cases coming from.”

He said for the first time in the current outbreak, Ebola had also reached small forest-based villages such as Alima, where access is “more challenging”.

Fall blamed the situation on the presence of armed groups from DRC and neighbouring Uganda.

“You cannot just say, ‘I have access, I can go.’ You have to negotiate; you have to assess conscious that the risk is still important.

“This is because as you know, with Ebola, you only need one case to start spreading or one high-risk contact not followed transfers the disease,’’ he said.

Asked about the infection threat in Uganda, where three people with Ebola died earlier this month after arriving from DRC, the WHO official insisted “there has been no transmission” of the virus.

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