Jean-Jacques Cornish

SA closes borders to travellers from Ebola countries

South Africa’s stepped into line with a number of its continental,partners by closing its borders to travelers  from the three West African nations worst hit by the Ebola virus.
Government spokesman Jo Maile says South Africa’s entry ban on anyone  coming in from Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea will be in place for as long as necessary. They’re have been no cases of Ebola since the outbreak, responsible for nearly 1 500 deaths, earlier this year.
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Speaking for the Health Ministry, Jo Maila says South Africans returning from
Ebola infected countries will be allowed back home but they’ll undergo extensive medical tests    .
The ministry’s asking South Africans to postpone trips to the infected countries indefinitely.
Those insisting on heading there will be officially quizzed about the necessity of their travel.
South Africa’s outright ban follows similar steps  by Kenya and Zambia last week.  Several  African nations have restricted air travel to and from the three countries.

The World Health Organization has urged airlines and countries to avoid isolating Ebola-hit countries.
The WHO says Ebola isn’t contagious until symptoms appear.
Contracting the disease during air travel is extremely unlikely.
Blanket bans and flight restrictions threaten fragile economies.
Maila says  South Africa’s  made its own call based on its own assessment.
There have been no cases of the disease in South Africa since the outbreak with a death toll approaching 1 500 began earlier this year.

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Jean-Jacques Cornish is a journalist and broadcaster who has been involved in the media all his adult life.

Starting as a reporter on his hometown newspaper, he moved briefly to then Rhodesia before returning to South Africa to become a parliamentary correspondent with the South African Press Association. He was sent to London as Sapa’s London editor and also served as special correspondent to the United Nations. He joined the then Argus group in London as political correspondent.

Returning to South Africa after 12 years abroad, he was assistant editor on the Pretoria News for a decade before becoming editor of the Star and SA Times for five years.

Since 1999 he’s been an independent journalist writing and broadcasting – mainly about Africa – for Talk Radio 702 and 567 Cape
Talk, Radio France International, PressTV, Radio Live New Zealand, Business Day, Mail & Guardian, the BBC, Agence France Press,
Business in Africa, Leadership, India Today, the South African Institute for International Affairs and the Institute for Security Studies.

He has hosted current affairs talk shows on Talk Radio 702 and 567 Cape Talk. He appears as an African affairs pundit on SABC Africa and CNBC Africa.
He lectured in contemporary studies to journalism students at the Tshwane University of Technology and the University of Pretoria.

He speaks on African affairs to corporate and other audiences.
He has been officially invited as a journalist to more than 30 countries. He was the winner of the 2007 SADC award for radio journalism.

He’s been a member of the EISA team observing elections in Somaliland, Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar, Zimbabwe, Egypt and Tunsiai.

In October 2009 he headed a group of 39 African journalists to the 60th anniversary celebrations of the Peoples’ Republic of China.

In January 2010 he joined a rescue and paramedical team to earthquake struck Haiti.

He is immediate past president of the Alliance Francaise of Pretoria.

Jean-Jacques is a director of Giant Media. The company was given access to Nelson Mandela in his retirement years until 2009.
He is co-producer of the hour-long documentary Mandela at 90 that was broadcast on BBC in January 2009.