Ebola: FG may sanction Kenya Airways for conveying corpse from Congo

The Federal Government may sanction Kenya Airways for flying a corpse to Nigeria from the Democratic Republic of Congo where an outbreak of Ebola virus has been reported.

This was disclosed by the Lagos State Commissioner For Health, Dr. Jide Idris, who spoke at a joint briefing organised by the state agency and the Federal Ministry of Heath, Abuja.

He said approval to bring the body from the country was not obtained by the airline.

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Idris, however, said the laboratory investigations showed that the corpse was not infected with EVD.

“The airline brought the remains of a Nigerian without having all documentation that are required to process its clearance by the Department of Port Health Services, Federal Ministry of Health.

“The Federal Government of Nigeria and relevant agencies condemn this deliberate breach.

“In line with industry practice, a report has been made to the Nigerian Civil Aviation, the regulatory agency of the Nigerian aviation industry on the occurrence.

“Necessary steps are being taken by the regulatory authority to sanction the airline in a bid to prevent future occurrence.

“We have commenced detailed investigation by all relevant agencies of government to determine the immediate and remote intentions of this unfortunate behaviour,” Idris stated.

He said the repatriation of bodies to the country has been banned to avoid the outbreak of the virus in the country.

The commissioner said, “The government will like to reiterate again that the ban is still in force and any attempt to contravene this ban will attract serious sanction.

“Government will want everyone to be vigilant and encourage all our officials at land, sea and air borders to continue screening of international passengers.

“ We want to appeal to all our international passengers to cooperate with our officials who are conducting screening at all our borders. This surveillance shall continue until further notice.

“All international carriers are also enjoined to cooperate with all relevant agencies of government to ensure unhindered surveillance,”

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