Bandama checkpoint in the Small Bo chiefdom, Kenema district is the last checkpoint to enter Kenema city.
Since the outbreak of Ebola in the country since 25th May 2014, there has been free flow of passengers in and out of Kenema city using the checkpoint.
To prevent Bo and Freetown from being attacked by the Ebola virus, the District Health Management Team (DHMT) in Kenema in collaboration with other stakeholders, have erected a screening centre at Bandama checkpoint to check for people with high fever which is a sign of Ebola virus. No vehicle is allowed to leave Kenema city after 7pm but vehicles are allowed to enter the city through the checkpoint, and no vehicle is allowed to leave the city before 7am.
Hundreds of passengers and vehicles go through this checkpoint on a daily basis.
Awoko reporter in Kenema city on Monday 30th June 2014 paid a visit to the checkpoint and even went through the screening process to see what was on the ground.
What I noticed was that some passengers had by-passed the screening centre by pretending to be standing in the queue, some keep on talking to the police officers thereby passing the screening centre, the motor bike riders and drivers usually go through without undergoing the screening, all these are potential ways of transporting the Ebola to other cities.
This have been going on for days, since the establishment of the screening centre.
The security forces detail at the checkpoint, need to commit themselves by ensuring that nobody by passes the centre because the health pasonnels are always busy with the passengers.
The DHMT has to put other measures in place to ensure that nobody passes through without being checked at the screening centre.
In the centre everybody is put to questioning which includes name, address, phone numbers, email address, destination and your health status.
By Saffa Moriba
Wednesday July 02, 2014