The nurse contracted the virus after treating a Liberian-American man who was initially bared from travelling after testing positive for the disease.
Nigeria’s health minister, Onyebuchi Chukwu, said in a statement that the man, Patrick Sawyer, a financial consultant with the Liberian ministry of finance evaded the authorities in Monrovia and tragically boarded for Lagos in Nigeria, via Lome in Togo and Accra in Ghana.
Chukwu explained that Sawyer was flagged at the point of disembarkation in Lagos where he was quarantined and transferred to a hospital in Lagos, straight from the airport, for further tests.
The minister said Nigeria was an ‘Ebola Virus free’ country until this incident of unfortunate contamination.
He said the country would continue fighting the virus together with stakeholders, local and international partners.
The Liberian government has since apologised to its West African neighbour after its national spread the virus into Africa’s most populous nation.
“Unfortunately, out of the initial 70 under both surveillance and isolation, nine of them developed symptoms of Ebola and were confirmed to have Ebola Virus Disease by the same laboratory. Tragically, one of them, a nurse, passed away on 6 August, 2014,” said Chukwu.
Chukwu said the Nigerian government was working closely with the World Health Organisation, Unicef, and the US Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, local authorities and other international partners to further deepen and broaden these containment efforts.
According to official figures about 1,000 people in West Africa have so far succumbed to the virus yet to find a cure.