Gbarpolu Reports First Suspected Ebola Case

There is a probable Ebola case in Gbarpolu County involving a female, County Health Officer (CHO), Dr. Anthony Tucker, has confirmed.

 He told the Liberia News Agency Sunday that the female suspected of the Ebola disease fled a holding center in Monrovia after her husband died of the virus.

He disclosed that the woman, who is currently in Kparwolozu in Belle District, has shown probable signs and symptoms of Ebola.

Tucker emphasized that fighting Ebola in Gbarpolu would be an expensive and difficult venture that requires the needed support to overcome the disease.

 He then expressed gratitude to the people of the county for their cooperation which continues to stimulate the awareness process about the Ebola virus.

Meanwhile, the Gbarpolu County Ebola Response Initiative (GCERI) over the weekend donated assorted medical supplies to the County Ebola Task Force to fight the disease.

The items include 100 plastic buckets, 12 cartoons of Clorox, two cartoons of powder soap, 20 reams of paper, US$90  worth of gasoline, and a banner with the inscription, ‘Gbarpolu Citizens  Ebola Response Initiative”, according to the Liberia News Agency.

 Presenting the items to the Task Force, the Chairman of the organization, Edrick F. Noah, said the donation represents the initial contribution to fight the deadly Ebola virus from the county.

US$100,000 Approved For Bassa Ebola Fight

BUCHANAN, August 24 (LINA) – Government has approved US$100,000 for Grand Bassa County from its Social Development Fund to fight the spread of Ebola in the county.

 Disclosing this to the Liberia News Agency in a brief mobile phone interview Friday, the Assistant Superintendent for Development, Adoni Z. Greaves, said the amount is for a period of one month.

Even though Greaves could not readily comment on how the money will be expended, the Chairman of the Grand Bassa Legislative Caucus, Nyonblee Karnga Lawrence, gave a part breakdown on how it will be disbursed on a social network Friday.

She said that two pickup trucks and seven motorbikes will be purchased for use by the Ebola Task Force of Grand Bassa County.

 She added that six quarantine centers will be built, furnished and electrified, while funding will be provided for one month of feeding at the centers.

She further said that US$5,000 will be disbursed to each of the five electoral districts for awareness campaign as well as purchasing of fuel oil, gas and chlorine.

Lawrence also disclosed that an amount of US$1,000 will be given to each of the six radio stations operating in the county for to disseminate awareness messages on the Ebola virus.

She said the city government will also be compensated for cleaning the City of Buchanan.

More Bed Space To Improve Ebola Response

The Senate Health Committee Chairman, Dr. Peter Coleman, says there would be improvement in the level of Ebola response with the completion of additional bed space at both JFK and ELWA hospitals.

 Senator Coleman made the disclosure recently while addressing the plenary on reasons why the Ebola response centers have not been able to cater for large numbers of infected persons.

Coleman, a medical doctor, noted that each of the two facilities would be able to serve over 100 new patients, and together, they would serve over 250 persons who urgently need attention.

The Grand Kru Senator said that the absence of a treatment center was a fundamental reason why there was limited response by health teams when called to assist persons needing help.

Meanwhile, Senators Thomas Grupee of  Nimba County and George Tengbeh of Lofa County have called for attention to be given their counties in the next stage of the response.

Grupee said Nimba need more attention due to its high population and large number of health facilities.

He said with 64 health facilities in the county, there is a need for each of these facilities to be ready for the possibility of dealing with cases that may arise.

For his part, Tengbeh called for more sensitization in rural areas in order to reduce the number of new cases, particularly since these areas are far from the treatment facilities being built.

Bassa Supt. Urges Leaders To Report Suspected Ebola Cases

 In a related development, Grand Bassa Superintendent Etweeda Cooper has called on zone and community leaders in Buchanan to report to health authorities sick persons in their communities for check-up at health centers.

She observed that although not every sick person with diarrhea and fever is an Ebola patient, it is safer for them to be thoroughly checked in order to be sure of their cases.

According to the Liberia News Agency, Superintendent Cooper made the call when she met with zone and community leaders at her office in Buchanan recently.

She pointed out that people are fleeing from Monrovia and other parts of Liberia to their relatives in Buchanan, adding that everyone needs to be checked to save the lives of residents.

Madam Cooper told the leaders that she cannot withstand citizens dying in the county from Ebola, adding that “every single case is one case too many.”

“I don’t want to see bodies lying in the streets of Buchanan. I don’t want to see bodies in your zones, so you zone leaders have to work overtime to save Buchanan and this is my order,” Supt. Cooper stressed.

She said the Ebola virus is more active when victims are about to die and when they are dead, because it has to find its way into a living being, noting that the virus is weak but, only if citizens follow the rules outlined by health authorities to conquer it.

“There is a quarantine site in Buchanan, and plans are underway to set up more centers in the districts and funding will be sought to feed those that will enter the quarantine sites,” she said.

Cooper explained that “under the State of Emergency, some of our rights are limited, our movements are limited and we do not want Bassa to be quarantined as has been done in some parts of Liberia.”

She added: “So we are setting up checkpoints in other parts of Bassa, including the Rivercess border and St. John River Bridge.”

She then urged the leaders to work harder to prevent the spread of the deadly disease that has already claimed the lives of hundreds of Liberians.


Author: D K Sengbeh

Danicius Kaihenneh Sengbeh (author of Sengbeh's Weblog) is a respected and renowned Liberian journalist, poet and writer with with journalism experience since 2001, of working both as a mainstream journalist and a communication/media consultant in Liberia. He is Secretary General of the Press Union of Liberia (elected Dec 2013). He was Assistant Secretary General of the Union Dec 2011 to Dec 2013. He is also Editor-In-Chief of The Informer Newspaper—one of Liberia’s credible dailies. Before joining the Informer, Danicius had served as reporter, chief reporter, sub-editor and News Editor at The Independent Newspaper between 2002 and 2006. Before then, he was reporter at the defunct Patriot Newspaper and Kiss FM 2001-2002. Danicius is a UN Media Fellow and Liberia’s first UN Medal Award-winning journalist for his contribution to journalism and for being the second Liberian journalist in 15 years to qualify for and successfully attended the United Nations’ Reham Al-Farra Memorial Journalist Fellowship Program in New York and Geneva, Switzerland in 2012. He earned a Bachelor’s of Arts Degree in Mass Communication and Sociology from the University of Liberia and a Diploma in Journalism from the International School of Journalism. He holds several awards and recognitions both in and outside of journalism, and carries dozens of certificates in journalism and communication from studies in Ghana, China, United States and Switzerland, among others. He volunteers as Chair of the Information and Communication Committee of his local Bardnersville community. He can be quickly reached via (+231) 886586531/777586531/777464018/

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