Arriving at Port Loko, one of the largest towns in the north of Sierra Leone, is like reaching a country under siege. In the face of Ebola, the 500,000 inhabitants of this district have been sealed off from the world, stigmatized like a cellblock of criminals, and left largely to fend for themselves. Even to bring them food and schoolbooks, you need a government pass. And they are not alone. Counting other districts under quarantine, more than a third of the nation cannot move freely.
There is something chillingly familiar about the fear, suspicion and desperation I saw. The military checkpoints, the closing of schools and entire towns, people begging and queuing for scarce relief food all reminded me of a childhood in the 1990s I would rather forget — one of civil war, displacement and peril.… Seguir leyendo »