My name is Superintendent Daniel Amara Bongroh, I am attached to the special operations department in Freetown west. Before Ebola came, I have always been a police officer and am still here as an operation officer. When Ebola started, I was tasked by my boss to deploy personnel at quarantine homes and to help the burial team to carry out their burials. Sometimes when there is a delay, I am called on to clear some blockages for the burial team to make head way into quarantine homes.
Firstly we must have respect for health issues. When they say don’t touch sick people, don’t. Culturally we are used to touching them, but in this situation, don’t, call 117 to come to their aid. Even if it’s malaria. I also learn that you cannot greet everyone at this stage, as you don’t know who has the disease.
Something happened that I will never forget. I had a colleague inspector who we lost to Ebola. He was a very close friend to me. Even his child who I was taking care of also died of Ebola, and my grandma residing in the village died due to Ebola. I can’t forget them easily.
We are still fighting to put Ebola behind us so we must adhere to all the signs and symptoms of the disease in order for it not to show up again. We must listen to the advice of the medical professionals. Once this is done I am sure Ebola will not resurface again.
I shared the grief of other people and so we will also share the good times together. If Ebola happens to show up in another country and we are consulted, we can be in a better position to tell them that this was the procedure we went through to get to where we are. We can tell them to avoid certain cultural practices like washing dead bodies, and too many greetings. These are the things we need to teach other people.