No coronavirus in South Sudan, minister says

Monday February 10 2020

Passengers from an international flight are screened at Juba International Airport in South Sudan on January 31, 2020. PHOTO | ALEX MCBRIDE | AFP

Passengers from an international flight are screened at Juba International Airport in South Sudan on January 31, 2020. PHOTO | ALEX MCBRIDE | AFP 

GARANG A. MALAK
By GARANG A. MALAK
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South Sudan has dismissed reports of coronavirus infection in the country, after news spread of a man suspected to have the virus.

Minister of Health Riek Gai told the press at the weekend that the 38-year-old Chinese man developed an acute respiratory disease 13 days after returning from Xinjiang near Wuhan - the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak in China.

The man was quarantined in the Infectious Disease Center and test samples were sent to Uganda Virus Research Center in Entebbe. The man tested negative for the virus, Dr Gai said in Juba.

“Measures have been put in place to protect the country. Some of you might have witnessed last time we installed a new device at Juba International Airport for screening and we are now working in collaboration with WHO to install two other similar devices, one in Paloch and one will be in Robkona,” he added.      

World Health Organization Country Representative Olushayo Olu encouraged the public to report any suspected cases using the emergency toll free number 6666.

The novel coronavirus has so far infected more than 40,000 people and killed more than 900.

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