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Nigerian Students Learn How To Protect Themselves Against Deadly Ebola Virus

Festus Iyorah / youthjournalism.org

 

Students at the University of Nigeria in Nsukka joined in a campaign to raise awareness of the Ebola virus and how people can protect themselves from it.

 

Festus Iyorah
Reporter
NSUKKA, Enugu, Nigeria – Students
must be conscious and hygienic in order to curb the deadly Ebola virus, biochemistry,
Professor Henry Onwubiko said Friday at a health conference at the University
of Nigeria in Nsukka.
Onwubiko called on students and the
university to attain consciousness and help keep the environment clean in this
period of possible infection.
“The global world has really entered
a period of insurgence in infectivity, a stage where viruses and pathogen
thrives in the society and students needs to attain consciousness and be
hygienic,” Onwubiko said.
Festus Iyorah / 

 

youthjournalism.org

 

Professor Henry Onwubiko

 

His lecture, “War against Ebola
virus” was part of the health conference, which included the biochemistry
department.
Before the conference, biochemistry
students staged a campaign around the university hoisting placards and banner
emblazoned with words sensitizing people on the deadly Ebola virus.
Ofurum who is also a third-year
student of Biochemistry urged other department in the university to join the
campaign against the Ebola virus disease and the university should also
organize lectures, seminars and conference  to stop the deadly virus
from spreading.
Festus Iyorah /youthjournalism.org

 

Students at the University of Nigeria in
Nsukka 

take part in an educational campaign

 

to raise 

 

awareness 

 

of Ebola.

 

 

 

Onwubiko, who is also a researcher looking
into the disease, said the university has a big role to play to curtail this
disease, including education, proper research and establishment of a disease
control center.
“The university needs to be connected
to the center of disease control and our laboratory needs to be equipped for
proper research on the virus,” Onwubiko said. “The university should also help
in orientating the students on how to increase their level of consciousness
towards the virus.”
Festus Iyorah / youthjournalism.org

 

Okechukwu Ochulor

 

One of the conference organizers,
20-year-old Okechukwu Ochulor, said general ignorance about the Ebola virus
spurred the biochemistry department to hold the event. He said there is a need
to sensitize students on the proper measures to take in order to prevent the scourge
of the virus from entering the university.
“The love we have for our fellow
student is what motivated us to organize this conference,” Ochulor said.
Students who attended the conference
were excited about the opportunity. 
“I feel good about this conference,
though I’ve been hearing rumours about Ebola virus,” said Dominic Igwebuike,
22. Afterward, he said he’d learned a lot.
Festus Iyorah /

 

 youthjournalism.org

Dominic Igwebuike

“From this conference I’ve learnt that people
can still survive this virus if reported on time, unlike before when I used to
think that someone cannot survive the virus,” said Favour Ofurum, 20.
According to the World Health
Organization, Ebola first appeared in 1976 in two simultaneous outbreaks, one
in a village near the Ebola River in the Democratic Republic of Congo and the
other in Sudan.
Festus Iyorah /
youthjournalism.org

Favour Ofurum

 

The virus, formerly known as Ebola
hemorrhagic fever, has a death rate of up to 90 percent. It is transmitted from
person to person through direct contact with bodily fluids, according to the
WHO, and there is not yet a vaccine to prevent it. Health workers and family
members of those with the virus are most likely to become infected.
The Daily Sun, a national newspaper in Nigeria, recently reported that
a nurse who had contact with an American doctor who died of Ebola, had skipped
quarantine and travelled to Enugu, a few miles away from the Nsukka campus,
which roused fear among students.
Aside from sensitizing people on what
the World Health Organization has tagged the “most deadly virus,” the
conference also dealt with how to prevent the virus from spreading.
Festus Iyorah / youthjournalism.org

 

Biodiversity conference participants at the
University 

of 

 

Nigeria in Nsukka.

 

 

Onwubiko said the university must
take responsibility by clearing the environment, especially the toilets, where
bodily fluids such as urine and saliva can be found. He also charged the university
to take the campaign against the virus seriously.
To students, Onwubiko said education
is more than reading and writing, but also means developing consciousness, and
taking responsibility for taking care of themselves and others in order to stop
the deadly virus.
Organizer Ochulor, who is a third-year
biochemistry student, said students should dress properly by wearing long
sleeves and hand gloves in order to avoid body contact. And, he said, security
officials should ensure good seating arrangements in the buses and cabs that
students use for transportation.
Ochulor said the university should
take this spread of Ebola seriously through lectures and seminars on the virus.
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