With just a few hours to the kickoff of the 2012 East and Central Africa’s oldest football fiesta, the organizing team, spearheaded by the Secretary General, Nicolas Musonye has cleared all the fears for the participating teams concerning the spread of the highest contagious Ebola virus.

“We already informed member associations of the Ebola scare and measures are underway to ensure that the tournament runs smoothly,” he said.The government has already affirmed the situtaution is under control and there is no cause for alarm.

“The Ministry of Health once again calls upon the public to stay calm as all possible measures are being undertaken to control the situation,” Christine Ondoa, Uganda’s minister of health, told the BBC radio during an exclusive interview .

In August, Malawi’s “Flames”, who are the guest team at this year’s tournament, called off a friendly against Uganda Cranes amid fears of the virus that had claimed several lives.

Ebola is a virus disease (EVD) or Ebola hemorrhagic fever (EHF) , which may be caused by any of four of the five known ebola viruses. These four viruses are: Bundibugyo virus (BDBV), Ebola virus (EBOV), Sudan virus (SUDV), and Taï Forest virus (TAFV, formerly and more commonly Côte d’Ivoire Ebola virus (Ivory Coast Ebolavirus, CIEBOV)). hemorrhagic fever (VHF), and is clinically nearly indistinguishable from Marburg virus disease (MVD).It is a contact disease that has no cure or vaccine and highly infectious.

The virus can be transmitted through direct contact with the blood or secretions of an infected person.

The CECAFA tournament gets underway on Saturday when South Sudan entertains Ethiopia at 2 p.m before the hosts and record holders, Uganda face Kenya later at 6 p.m A total of 12 national teams from the region are expected in Kampala starting next week, for the two week tournament.

David Isabirye is a senior staff writer for Kawowo Sports where he covers most of the major events.

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