VP Boakai Visits Barkedu in Lofa, Ebola Hot Spot

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The Vice President of Liberia, Joseph N. Boakai, visited Barkedu Town in the Quardu Gboni district in Lofa county on Monday, September 1.

Barkedu Town, from all indications, is the hardest affected community in the entire country, with 172 Ebola deaths since the outbreak in May 2014.

Rep. Mariamu B. Fofana, who represents the district,  told the Vice President that the 172 deaths were all citizens of Barkedu Town, and there had been only 20 survivors of the virus. She appealed to the VP for more assistance to her people.

VP Boakai, in response, said that the President of Liberia was concerned about the people of Lofa County and extended her condolences to the people of Lofa for the suffering they were going through.

He said that all is not yet lost as there was still hope for a better life after the Ebola virus which, he pledged, will be defeated very soon.

He then donated the amount of LD$30,000 (thirty thousand Liberian dollars) to the burial team in Barkedu town.

Meanwhile, members of the Barkedu Development Association (BDA), based in the United States of America, are calling on the Government of Liberia to quarantine Barkedu Town.

The BDA president, Abdullah S. Sheriff, said in a statement that government’s failure to quarantine the  Town after the outbreak of the Ebola virus has exacerbated the situation in the area, something he described as very outrageous and disappointing, especially being the town that has so far recorded the largest number of casualties as a result of the Ebola virus.

Meanwhile, Mr. Sheriff has described the State of Emergency declared by President Sirleaf early last month to contain the spread of the virus, as a good move, but added that it would not have taken place if government had been very proactive from the onset of the fight against the virus.

VP Boakai also visited the Telewoyan Hospital in Voinjama, the only referral Hospital in the County, where Doctor Musa Ziannah explained some of the challenges facing the health workers at the hospital.  He also spoke of the lack of sufficient health workers and equipment and called on Government for more support.

Dr. Ziannah also disclosed the establishment, in the near future, of a treatment center in Voinjama MSF,  which will make it easier to treat patients in Voinjama rather than taking them Foya which is about an hour and thirty minutes’ drive. He is presently in Foya, his home town, where he spent the night to see things for himself.

Lofa County remains calm and hopeful, with reports of an 85% drop in new cases and deaths, according to the county health team.

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