January 16, 2015 By Alusine Sesay
The Ebola outbreak has had a negative impact on every facet of life, including the Office of Births and Deaths, the statutory body responsible to record and release annual report of the number of births and deaths within a calendar year.
According to Principal Registrar, Alhaji S. Nallo, the report which is usually released on 31 December, has been embargoed by Chief Medical Officer Dr. Brima Kargbo, who he said advised that the report should not be released until it is certified.
Nallo revealed that since the report was sent to the Ministry of Health and Sanitation for verification and despite several visits there, the report is still embargoed.
He said the delay was unprecedented, as although they would usually send the annual report to the ministry for verification, it would only take few days before it is cleared for release.
Though they requested for it, he said, confirmed Ebola deaths were not recorded in the 2014 report, but the ministry had promised to make the data available upon compiling a comprehensive national list.
He affirmed though that they have only drafted a provisional report as all Ebola deaths would be recorded in the final report due to be released by end of March.
He lamented the fact that despite being the statutory body with responsibility to register all deaths in the country, they are not part of the National Ebola Response Centre or the burial teams.