Landmark moment as Guinea declared ebola-free two years on from outbreak

Guinea, the west African country where the worst ever Ebola outbreak began two years ago, is free of the disease, the World Health Organization (WHO) said Tuesday. "Today the World Health Organization declares the end of Ebola virus transmission in the Republic of Guinea,“ the UN agency said. WHO said that Guinea will now enter "a 90-day period of heightened surveillance to ensure that any new cases are identified quickly before they can spread to other people." The last known case in Guinea is a three-month-old baby named Nubia, who was born with the disease but whose recovery was confirmed on November 16.

It’s the best year-end present that God could give to Guinea, and the best news that Guineans could hope for.

Alama Kambou Dore, an Ebola survivor

One of the poorest nations in the world, Guinea leapt to global prominence after becoming the host country for "patient zero” – an infant, Emile Ouamouno, who on December 2013 became the outbreak’s first of 2,500 fatalities. The Ebola fever spread stealthily and terrifyingly, striking two neighbouring countries, Sierra Leone and Liberia, with sporadic cases also in Mali, Nigeria and Senegal. The WHO officially declared Sierra Leone Ebola-free on November 7, triggering wild celebrations in the capital Freetown. On December 3, Liberia released its last two known Ebola cases from hospital, starting the six-week countdown.

We have to be very careful, because even if open transmission has been stopped, the disease has not been totally defeated.

Alpha Seny Souhmah, a Guinean health technician who himself was infected but survived