Deadly Ebola Virus is spreading intensely and getting worse across Sierra Leone, Africa

Ebola Virus

The Ebola virus is spreading intensely across Sierra Leone, prompting the World Health Organisation (WHO) to again revise the death toll upwards to 6,070 out of 17,145 cases.
Sierra Leone recorded 537 new Ebola cases in the week to November 30, compared with 385 new cases the previous week, the WHO said.
“Transmission remains persistent and intense across the country, with the exception of the south,” it said.
World Bank chief Jim Yong Kim announced a $US160 million ($190.3 million) two-year economic recovery plan on Wednesday to help the impoverished country battle the worst Ebola outbreak on record.
Mr Kim said after a closed-door meeting with president Ernest Bai Koroma in the capital Freetown, the cash would go towards regional operations centres and emergency response teams in the hard-hit west and north of the country.
The aid would also focus on the country’s floundering farming sector and rural job creation, he said.
“We are concerned that agricultural production has dropped significantly as a result of the Ebola epidemic and we will help farmers recover by building feeder roads that connect small farmers to markets,” Mr Kim said.
“We must make sure that the Ebola epidemic is not followed by a food security crisis,” he said.
“We will work to improve basic infrastructure such as urban services and access to electricity that will help the wellbeing of citizens.”
Sierra Leone facing recession next year
An increase in cases in Sierra Leone’s west is causing alarm, and the World Bank said the fallout from Ebola would push the country into recession next year.
The West African nation of six million people grew at 11.3 per cent in the first half of the year but has contracted since at a rate of 2.8 per cent.
The country was expected to achieve 4 per cent growth this year and shrink by 2 per cent in 2015.
Gross domestic product could fall $US900 million ($1.071 billion) next year, the bank said.
Food production would also decrease because planting was curtailed from June to August.
Heavy rain in September hit the country’s rice crop and iron ore prices plunged.
A recent United Nations study in Sierra Leone found that 47 per cent of people questioned believed that the crisis had seriously affected their agricultural activities.
Mr Koroma said he was reassured by Mr Kim’s visit.
“The presence of [Mr Kim] will send a signal to the rest of the world that Sierra Leone is still open for visitors,” Mr Koroma said in a joint news conference.
“We are still safe, we are fighting Ebola and our focus is to isolate the virus and not to isolate the country.”
Mr Kim flew to Guinea’s capital Conakry, where he was expected to meet government officials and health experts.

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One response to “Deadly Ebola Virus is spreading intensely and getting worse across Sierra Leone, Africa”

  1. Cornelius Depina says :

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