Ebola, the deadliest outbreak ever in history, continues to plague Liberia as President Ellen John-Sirleaf and her Government scramble to stop the virus from spreading further. The alarming rate of the disease which, Health Ministry officials say, has already killed 129 victims out of 249 cases to include doctors and nurses, has compared the Liberian Government to leave no stone unturned towards efforts to battle it out.
In furtherance of the foregoing, on July 26, 2014, President Sirleaf announced to the nation, the establishment of a national taskforce on Ebola to work with the Liberian health team in fighting the deadly disease. The taskforce, according to the President, will provide support and guidance for the health team, as well as ensure the establishment of a Community Outreach Force with individuals mobilized from each community to sensitize and provide information about the disease, specifically on how community dwellers can protect themselves.
As a manifestation of her administration’s commitment to the fight against the Ebola virus disease, President Sirleaf, last weekend, ordered the closure of most of the country’s borders, while the fewer points of entry that are still open will have Ebola testing centers to implement preventive measures. As part of the national effort against the deadly disease, the president also placed restrictions on public gatherings and ordered hotels, restaurants and other entertainment venues to play a five-minute video on Ebola safety. In another address to the nation, the Liberian Leader, on Thursday, July 30, 2014 announced the suspension of tariffs placed on all disinfectants, as well as buckets used for hygiene purpose.
Among other actions, the President also announced the closure of all academic and vocational institutions, the cremation of all Ebola dead victims, as well as the suspension of all foreign travels by government officials, except the Vice President and a very few officials, including the Foreign Minister, while a few communities already identified will be quarantined to allow the movement of only health workers. Though these developments may be considered belated, there have been no better time for them than now.
These actions by the government must not only be hailed, but highly rated as we all strive toward preventing the disease from further spreading. With these latest actions, Liberians are now assured that the battle against Ebola is theirs. Considering these welcomed commitments by President Sirleaf and her administration, it is now incumbent on the business community, civil society, community dwellers and Liberians in general to buttress such efforts, through donations, awareness and sensitization for a more progressive and life-saving battle against the deadly Ebola disease. The latest actions taken by the government are only a clear manifestation of its desire and commitment to the safety and well-being of its people.
Therefore, as a people, we must help the government to help us all against Ebola by refraining from deniability and complacency; as community dwellers we must be our own campaigners against the disease by adhering to all of the preventive measures outlined by the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare and partners and assisting the entire awareness and sensitization process in our respective communities. Again, the President and Government of Liberia must be commended for such national endeavors against the spread of the deadly Ebola virus.