Tuesday, 28 October 2014

9 West African Students Barred From Starting Medical School In The Caribbean Due To Ebola Scare

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Despite the fact that World Health Organization has declared Nigeria free of Ebola, a dangerous stigma continues to follow Nigerians and other West Africans since the outbreak of the deadly virus. This is largely due to by international panic that West Africans are carrying or spreading the disease.

Saharareporters reported a story of a group of nine West African students traveling to the Commonwealth of Dominica in the Caribbean was barred from entry to Saint Martin, a stop en route to Dominica. 

The students, who planned to study at the All Saints Medical School in Dominica, were told that they could not enter the island to catch the 30 minute connecting flight that would bring them to Dominica because of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.

The students, four female and five male, left Lagos, Nigeria aboard Ethiopian Airlines on Saturday, October 18th, billed to arrive in Dominica on Sunday the 19th. Following a 22-hour flight, the students arrived in St. Martin, yet were refused entry to the island because of concern regarding Ebola. 

This rejection came after the students showed evidence that they tested negative for the virus. None of the nine, who came from both Nigeria and Ghana, were ever even exposed to infected persons.

Rather than finish the journey, the students were sent back to Nigeria, first flown to Panama, then Brazil, then Togo, then Nigeria this past Wednesday. A trip of 22 hours ballooned into a nightmarish five-day ordeal, with the return trip costing students N575,000. During the period, the teenagers slept in airport lobbies unattended, without any amenities. Neither the parents nor the school were notified of the developments.

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