Ahead of the forthcoming friendly match between Nigeria’s Super Eagles and their Democratic Republic of Congo counterparts, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has assured Nigerians that there would be no cause for alarm over the Ebola outbreak in the central African country.
The much-waited match is slated to hold on May 28, and with more than 40 cases — including 25 deaths recorded — in the outbreak are under investigation.
Addressing newsmen during the weekend in Abuja, Chikwe Ihekweazu, chief executive officer of NCDC, said the DR Congo players would be thoroughly screened before they come into the country.
He said the centre is making other necessary efforts to ensure the virus is not imported into the country through DR Congo.
“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,” he said.
“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 problem.
“There is very little risk associated with this game. Most of the players of DRC like their Super Eagles’ counterpart play in Europe. So, actually, they have had very little contact with the DRC.
“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.”
The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) had earlier said the friendly match was not threatened as a result of the outbreak in the country.
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