Sierra Leone head Coach Atto Mensah has said the Ebola outbreak that is distressing not only his country Sierra Leone but the World is worst than war.
Talking to the Dutch Public Broadcaster NOS.nl the 52-year-old trainer, who is also personally involved in social projects for children who lost their parents in the civil war said.
“People live in fear. It’s awful. Hopefully it will pass quickly, the disease was underestimated at first,”
“We survived a civil war but Ebola is worse than war. The disease is an invisible enemy.
“It also goes against our culture, not touch each other. Africans always touch each other.
“Everyone is always on the street before now. This is now suddenly not. We hope that the problem will be resolved quickly. It is not in our hands. But we can do give people a boost.
Ghana-born Mensah’s first test will be against Cameroon to lift Sierra Leone from the foot of Group D.
The Coach travels with his squad on Monday, October 6th en-route Paris to Yaoundé’ Cameroon.
Within four days, Sierra Leone plays twice against Cameroon.
“That’s strange, of course’s home and away match in the same stadium, because of the circumstances. I cannot select local players is unfortunate of course, sad and difficult.
The former Leone Stars player was born in Ghana. He started playing at an early age. His football career brought him to Sierra Leone where he played for E.E. Lions and was naturalized in 1987 and played for the national team of Sierra Leone.
Mensah made his Sierra Leone’s debut in a 2-0 win against Nigeria’s Super Eagles in Freetown in the 1988 Nations Cup qualifiers, providing the assist for the second goal.
“Everyone knows me there; I’ve played a lot of matches”.
He went on to play five more matches for Leone Stars in the 1988 West African regional Zone II football tournament in Guinea Bissau before he departed for Spain and later to the Netherlands, met his Dutch wife, took a coaching course at the KNVB (TC-2) and was an amateur trainer.
Meanwhile, Celebrations in West Africa for the Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha have been badly affected by the Ebola outbreak that has killed over 3431 people.
Report released on Saturday in Geneva, Switzerland, WHO said that the casualties from the scourge in Liberia was more than half of 3,431 total deaths so far recorded from 7,470 cases of the disease.
According to the report, next to Liberia is Guinea, where the latest outbreak started in December, 2013, with 739 deaths, followed by Sierra Leone with 623.
Latest reports from Guinea say public places used for prayers are deserted while religious leaders in Sierra Leone told Muslims not to shake hands or embrace.