EYEAFRICA TV: Banjul, The Gambia: The community of Numuyel in the outskirts of Basse, Upper River Region has been lock-down following confirmation of a case of the COVID-19 while health authorities try to figure out the nature of the virus in the area.
The Gambia has since the declaration of corona virus as global pandemic been confined to two confirmed cases one of who has died on Sunday.
At a daily press conference on Tuesday, the Director of Health Promotion and Education of the ministry of health and social welfare said the case was confirmed on a 71-year-old Gambian who returned from France on March 17.
He flew in on Aski flight TFL 458 which had 59 passengers in number, exactly the day Gambia confirmed the first confirmed case also on a traveler from Europe.
The government has announced the total closure of all borders with effect from Monday midnight over lapses in the enforcement of the compulsory quarantine for travelers from all corona virus hotspot into the country.
Health ministry has since the confirmation of first case of the COVID – 19 been under pressure in the management of travelers at all entry posts.
The country initially limited suspension of flights from thirteen countries with additional measure to quarantine arrivals from any of the Corona virus hit countries across the world but the aftermath of this policy seemed to subject Gambians to extreme risk of the spread of the disease.
Mr Njie said it is not clear how the third index case traveled from the Banjul International Airport to the Upper River Region but nine of his close contacts including escorts and nurses are held for compulsory quarantine.
He noted that contact tracing is ongoing with sample of all health personnel who attended to the patient collected for testing. ‘Over 400 individuals have requested through the hotline contact 1025 for observation and possible testing for the corona virus,’ Mr Njie said.
Fourteen passengers who entered the country via the Banjul International Airport were reported to have absconded from a quarantine centre that was arranged by the Ministry of Health and went into the community.