Team's Fears Over Ebola Outbreak
2 August 2014, 11:32
Many members of Sierra Leone's Commonwealth Games team do not want to return home amid fears over the killer Ebola virus outbreak in their country, it has been reported.
Unisa Deen Kargbo, the team's chef de mission, told The Times that the delegation are worried about the situation at home, where a public health emergency has been declared.
Yesterday it emerged that Sierra Leone cyclist Moses Sesay, 32, was admitted to a Glasgow hospital last week after feeling unwell and doctors tested him for various conditions, including Ebola - which is blamed for 729 deaths in an outbreak in four west African countries.
But Sesay was given the all clear and released from hospital in time to compete in the men's individual time trial at the Games yesterday.
Mr Kargbo told The Times: "Many people are thinking whether or not to go home now. Everybody is worried and many of them don't want to go home now because of the Ebola.
"We have held several meetings with them, but they are still worried. This virus is spreading around our country and everyone is at risk of catching it. The problem is, if they want to stay on after the Commonwealth Games end, who will take care of them?
"They will have no accommodation, no work. How do they meet their needs? How will they get themselves employed?''
He said that the athletes will be forced to return to Sierra Leone if these issues are not addressed.
Asked yesterday if there were any other athletes in isolation in Glasgow hospitals awaiting test results for Ebola, Jackie Brock-Doyle, a spokeswoman for Glasgow 2014, said: ''No, just to be really clear, there is no Ebola in the athletes' village, there is no Ebola virus in Scotland. I want to be really, really clear about that.''
Confusion surrounds the whereabouts of another Sierra Leone athlete, Mohamed Tholley, who had been expected to compete in the time trial event in Glasgow on Thursday but failed to turn up, the Telegraph newspaper reported.
At the games today three athletes who have made as many headlines outside the Glasgow 2014 stadiums as they have for their sporting prowess will compete for Commonwealth glory today.
Usain Bolt is appearing in a final of the men's athletics, after leading Jamaica to victory in the qualifying heats at Hampden last night.
The much-anticipated appearance of the world's fastest man has been overshadowed by controversial comments attributed to him in The Times newspaper, in which he reportedly said the games were "a bit s***'' and he was "not really'' having fun in Scotland.
The six-time Olympic champion made his Commonwealth Games debut after he missed the event in Melbourne in 2006 through injury and opted to skip the 2010 Games in Delhi.
Diver Tom Daley will be back in action in the men's 10m final after coming agonisingly close to Commonwealth Games gold in the synchronised event last night after a near-perfect final dive which left Daley and teammate James Denny settling for silver.
And Australia's Sally Pearson booked her place in today's 100m hurdles final after blitzing the heats last night, vindicating her controversial decision to show up late to a Commonwealth Games camp.
The 27-year-old athlete has arrived in Glasgow as the undoubted star of the Australia track and field team and looking to retain the 100 metres hurdles title she won in Delhi four years ago.
Today will also see action in boxing, badminton, hockey, netball, squash and table tennis.
High drama on the Glasgow Green hockey pitch yesterday saw England pip New Zealand on penalties to reach today's women's final.
And England are certain to top a table tennis podium today after the husband-and-wife team of Paul and Joanna Drinkhall set up a shot at Liam Pitchford and Tin Tin Ho in the mixed doubles final yesterday.