5 May 2015
Liberia is poised to be declared free of the deadly Ebola virus according to the UN’s senior representative in the country.
More than 10,000 people have died from the disease over the last year in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.
Daniel Dickinson reports
Speaking to the UN Security Council on Tuesday, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General in Liberia, Karin Landgren, said that if no new case of Ebola was reported by next Saturday, the West African country would be declared officially free of Ebola.
A massive international response was launched by the UN and its partners to eradicate the deadly virus across West Africa.
It now appears that Liberia will be the first of the three worst affected countries to be rid of Ebola.
Karin Landgren said important lessons have been learned.
“Ebola highlighted Liberia’s underlying fragility. Beyond the public health crisis, Liberians were angered by the Government’s slow response and by the rising cost of basic commodities, while the use of the Armed Forces and the introduction of a Sate of Emergency also fueled fears.”
Ms Landgren said now is the time to address the factors which contributed to the spread of the disease, namely weak social service delivery, lack of accountability and an overly centralised government.
Daniel Dickinson, United Nations