Lagos — Arik Air yesterday announced it has suspended flights to the Liberian capital Monrovia and Freetown in Sierra Leone because of concerns over the deadly Ebola virus.
A spokesman for the airline, Mr. Adebanji Ola, said the suspension was necessary following the first Ebola virus death in Lagos, involving a Liberian man who flew into the city last week by a foreign airline.
Ola said Arik will be suspending operations into Monrovia and Freetown effective today until further notice. He said the decision is a pre-cautionary measure aimed at safeguarding the lives of Nigerians.
"We humbly suggest that as a first step, all inbound flights into Nigeria which originate from any of the Ebola affected countries be immediately suspended," Arik said.
The Ebola virus has, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO), claimed 660 lives in three West African countries namely, Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.
Meanwhile, Nigerian health authorities and airport officials have been quarantining travellers arriving from Sierra Leone and Liberia, and conducting analysis on them to detect any possible case of the Ebola virus.
Also people who travelled on the airline that brought the first victim to Nigeria are being investigated by health authorities.