A state of confusion and fear overcame residents of Zeon Town in the ELWA Community yesterday morning when five members of a family were found lying unconscious in their windowless, one-bedroom house.
The house has no windows and only a front door, but in there lived five family members.
Neighbors in the immediate vicinity attributed their condition to poor ventilation, while others are convinced that an evil spirit or witchcraft had visited them that night.
Those found unconscious were identified as Sabastine Saye, his wife, Joyce Bartuah, Erica Saye, 8, Eric Saye, 6, and Patience Saye, 15.
The Community chairman, Pastor Daniel T. Nyon, told the Daily Observer in an interview that Joyce Bartuah “went around Wednesday to sell cassava gravy soup, which is part of her daily routine to sustain the family, and her husband too, went to work, but returned as usual.”
“Accordingly, they all returned as usual in the evening hours, but to our utmost surprise this morning, (yesterday), the whole family could not wake up, as they were found lying together unconscious.”
Prior to yesterday’s episode, Pastor Nyon recalled, Sabastine’s wife awoke early as usual to prepare her cassava gravy soup to sell, while the man went to work, but as of the incident, the pastor said he did not know what really went wrong, because there is no generator in the house to produce electric-shock or carbon monoxide, which is also a killer.
“This is the first incident of its kind, since I came to this community and was elected the chairman. It has brought the entire community to a standstill, for which I am shocked,” he lamented.
Pastor Nyon told newsmen that the community inhabitants, with the help of some herbalists and some medical practitioners managed to revive the victims, but not surprisingly, they were weak and helpless to the extent that they could not explain their nightmare.
“Right now, there are some improvements in the conditions of the victims as compared to how they looked earlier when they could not move any part of their bodies.”
Hope was restored to the community when the victims rose up, but could neither speak nor eat. They had earlier been tested by a response team and were all pronounced Ebola free.
Right there, nurses from the Ebola Case Management Unit at the nearby Medicine Sans Frontier (MSF) Hospital advised the victims to seek further medical assistance from any health center since they were all Ebola free.
The story changed again for the worse when the ELWA Hospital refused to admit the victims on grounds that there were no empty beds to admit that number of patients without fully establishing their medical history.
Officers of the Liberia National Police (LNP), headed by the Deputy Commander for the ELWA Detail, Inspector McClain Tarpeh, arrived on the scene to restore calm among anxious residents and onlookers who gathered there.
According to him, the police were there as part of their duty to protect lives and property, but they could not readily give an explanation of what could have gone wrong that led to the strange occurrence.