Liberia will prosecute Thomas Eric Duncan, the first man diagnosed with Ebola in the US, accusing him of lying over his contact with an infected relative.
When he left the country last month, Liberian national Thomas Eric Duncan filled in a questionnaire saying that none of his relatives were sick.
However, Liberia’s assistant health minister said Thomas Eric Duncan had taken a sick relative to a clinic in a wheelbarrow.
Thomas Eric Duncan is in a serious condition in a Dallas hospital.
His is the first case of Ebola to be diagnosed on US soil, where as many as 100 people are being checked for exposure to the deadly virus.
More than 3,330 people have died in the Ebola outbreak in four West African countries.
Liberia’s prosecution announcement was made at the weekly Ebola update news conference, which is attended by numerous government officials and was dominated by the case of Thomas Eric Duncan.
“We wish him a speedy recovery; we await his arrival in Liberia to face prosecution,” Binyah Kesselly, the chairman of the board of directors of the Liberia Airport Authority, said.
Deputy Information Minister Isaac Jackson confirmed that Thomas Eric Duncan would be prosecuted as he “lied under oath about his Ebola status”.
Assistant Health Minister Tolbert Nyenswah explained at the briefing that he was investigating Thomas Eric Duncan’s movements before he left Liberia on September 19.
He said Thomas Eric Duncan works as a driver in Liberia for Save-Way Cargo, a subsidiary of the international courier service FedEx, and lives in the Paynesville 72nd Community suburb of Monrovia.
Eric Vaye, a neighbor of Thomas Eric Duncan’s, was also at the briefing to help with contact tracing, and said that nine people had died of Ebola in the district in recent weeks.
Thomas Eric Duncan is alleged to have pushed the wheelbarrow when taking a sick relative to a clinic.
This is banned and people are obliged to phone a hotline number to ensure that patients are collected by health workers so further contact with sick people is avoided.
Tolbert Nyenswah said it was “less likely” that Thomas Eric Duncan had passed on the disease when in Liberia because he was not showing signs before he left.
According to the latest UN figures, there have been 7,178 confirmed Ebola cases, with Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea suffering the most.
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