Religion of Monday, 11 August 2014
The Lighthouse Chapel in Accra has directed its members to stop exchanging pleasantries through handshakes and hugs as part of measures in preventing the outbreak of the deadly Ebola disease in Ghana.
Although the disease is yet to be recorded in the West African country, the church said it is putting measures in place to avoid any eventualities. The church, according to reports, has posted notices warning members against hugging each other within the church premises.
However, the resident pastor of the Royal House Chapel in Accra, which has also implemented a similar policy, Derick Amanor, said the intention is not to prevent members from fraternising among themselves.
“We are asking people to take the appropriate precaution, we are asking them to wash their hands and offering the necessary education but we do have medical team to attend to such complication so I believe that when such an issue comes up we can deal with it appropriately,” he told Accra-based Adom FM.
Ebola has so far killed close to 1,000 people in Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Nigeria.
It is contracted through direct contact with fluids of infected patients as well as from eating bush meat: apes, fruit bats and antelopes. The World Health Organization says it has lost control over the fast-spreading epidemic and has declared it an international public health emergency.
In compliance, Nigeria, Liberia and Sierra Leone have all declared national health emergencies and restricted movement in certain areas to contain the spread.