Nigerians residing in the UK are currently hit by hard times as authorities step up efforts to sensitize the public on the likelihood of immigrants from West African countries contracting the dreaded Ebola Virus Disease (EVD).
It would be recalled that the government has commenced the monitoring of ports and airports after cancelling direct flights from West African countries, the epicentre of the disease where over four thousand have died in five nations.
The UK government has also cast its net a little wider to screen everyone from Brussels, Paris, Frankfurt and Amsterdam
It was recently reported that about 20,000 students from West African countries are studying at British universities. Around 17,000 of these are from Nigeria, where the outbreak has been contained.
Reports have it that most universities in the UK resumed late last month and government has been creating awareness sensitizing cleaners in the schools to see students who hail from the region as Ebola victim suspects.
This has made school authorities critical of West Africans, and suspicious of their Ebola status, and monitor the highest-risk students for up to three weeks – the incubation period of the Ebola virus.
The move follows growing fears that an infected person could bring Ebola virus into the UK and cause an outbreak, as has already happened in the U.S.
The government this week announced plans to screen air and Eurostar passengers arriving in Britain, but with no symptoms visible during Ebola’s incubation period, there are questions as to how effective such screening may be.
Exeter University revealed it had around 200 students returning from Ebola affected areas. A group of university officers would be monitoring accommodation arrangements, particularly where there was shared use of kitchen and bathrooms, but a spokesman insisted officials were sensitive to the possibility of alienating West African students.
At University College, London, advice has been circulated telling students to call emergency services if they develop headache, diarrhoea or vomiting within three weeks of arriving back in Britain. And at Cardiff University staff are being told to isolate students complaining of Ebola-like symptoms.
Sources said even West Africans who had long visited the region are equally suspected as Ebola victim.
Yesterday, a huge simulation of Ebola crisis exercise(pictured right) in the north of England to rehearse a response to an outbreak took place. It was performed by actors to test Britain’s ability to cope with an outbreak of Ebola.
Additional reports from MailOnline