A woman has died from Ebola just one day after the epidemic was officially declared over.
The body of the 22-year-old woman tested positive for the virus in Sierra Leone, theWorld Health Organisation (WHO) said today.
The victim, thought to be a student named Mariatu Jalloh, became ill at the beginning the year and died on Jan 12.
She had sought medical attention at a local hospital but was treated as an outpatient.
Ms Jalloh, from the Northern Kambia District, lived in a house with 22 people and potentially exposed at least 27 people altogether.
A spokesman for the WHO, who declared an end to the epidemic on Thursday, told the Mirror Online: “This just confirms what we said yesterday – everyone must stay vigilant and alert.”
“We expected flare ups, maybe not in the first few hours, but nothing has changed,” the spokesman added.
Authorities in Sierra Leone are tracing her contacts and have dispatched teams to the area for investigations.
Certain areas will be quarantined, Francis Langoba Kellie, spokesman for the Office of National Security, said.
The WHO declared an end to the deadliest Ebola outbreak ever after no new cases emerged in Liberia.
It had been at least two weeks since Ebola had been seen in Guinea or Sierra Leone.
The three countries were those most affected by the epidemic that began two years ago.
“Our level of preparedness and response capabilities are very high and there is no cause for concern,” said Mr Kellie.
“We encourage the public to continue to practise the hygiene regulations which were in force during the period while Ebola was raging and the emergency regulations are still in force.”
Dr Bruce Aylward, from the WHO, said: “We are now at a critical period in the Ebola epidemic as we move from managing cases and patients to managing the residual risk of new infections.
“We still anticipate more flare-ups and must be prepared for them.”