The Congolese are being hosted by Nigeria in a farewell worldwide friendly match in Port Harcourt and president of the NFF, Amaju Pinnick has also allayed fears that DRC's arrival could put Nigeria at risk of another outbreak of the deadly Ebola after fresh cases of the disease were reported in the central African nation. The vaccine is still not licensed but proved effective during limited trials in West Africa in the biggest ever outbreak of Ebola, which killed 11,300 people in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone between 2014 and 2016.
"The aim is for health officials to start using the vaccine, once it's shipped, by the end of the week, or next week if there are difficulties, said WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus..."
The outbreak is centred around the remote town of Bikoro in the province of Equateur, which has 31 of the cases and 274 contacts.
The Africa CDC will dispatch a team on Wednesday to the DRC to assess the situation and the level of support required to ongoing efforts by DRC and other partners to contain the outbreak, said John Nkengasong, Director of Africa CDC, during a press briefing on Tuesday at the African Union (AU) headquarters in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa.
"The World Health Organisation states that Nigeria and other African countries are at risk of spread, " she said.
Bikoro Health Zone reported the highest number of cases (n=31), followed by Iboko (n=8) and Mbandaka (n=2) Health Zones.
This would have triggered the formation of an emergency World Health Organization committee, the statement adds. "Our current estimate is we need to vaccinate around 8,000 people, so we are sending 8,000 doses in two lots", he told Reuters in Geneva.
The vaccine should be used in a couple of days.
The WHO said 1,500 sets of personal protective equipment and an emergency sanitary kit sufficient for 10,000 people for three months were being put in place.
Vaccinations could begin by next Monday, he said.
"The Ebola vaccine is an additional tool in our response to the outbreak".
"The latest numbers until May 13, 2018 are: 42 cases, including two confirmed; 21 probable and 19 suspected".