In solidarity & determination to end Ebola…

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Women go Yellow today

March 30, 2015 By Victoria Saffa

Ahead of the three-day stay-at-home sanctioned by the government, women across Sierra Leone will today wear yellow to demonstrate their solidarity and determination to end the Ebola virus in the country, almost 10 months into the outbreak.

The ‘Yellow Day Campaign’ by the National Ebola Response Center (NERC) is in collaboration with the Sierra Leone Association of Journalists (SLAJ) Yellow Ribbon Campaign to end the Ebola outbreak in the country.

Making a statement at the weekly NERC press briefing yesterday, Chief Executive Officer, Retired Major Alfred Palo Conteh, welcomed the role women have played in helping their families get early treatment and for making the right decision in wearing yellow today, to showcase their determination to end the Ebola virus.

“We must recognise the role of women and listen to their stories of strength and sacrifice. Women are playing a leading role as we strive to and stay at zero, and we thank them for this,” said the NERC CEO.

He noted that many people were concerned about hazard payment after President Koroma had pronounced that the outbreak would end by 31 March, but they would still need most of the Ebola treatment units, Ebola community care centres, burial teams, laboratories, swabbers, contract tracers, surveillance officers, and quarantine officers, among others, even after the virus is defeated.

“We will go on making arrangements for paying the staff we need, and we will be asking some to return to their previous jobs,” said Mr. Conteh. “Our country needs teachers, health workers, students, and businessmen, so they can be safely moved from their Ebola work.”

Retired Major Conteh expressed optimism that the country can get to zero and remain so for 42 days. “We must try to do that before the rains come and also encourage everyone to take active part in our own ways, and support this push to get us to zero,” he urged.