Via Reuters: Protesters march on Ebola center in Sierra Leone. Excerpt:
Thousands marched on an Ebola treatment center in Sierra Leone on Friday after a former nurse alleged that the deadly virus was invented to conceal "cannibalistic rituals" at the ward, a regional police chief said.
Across Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, at least 660 people have died from the illness, according to the World Health Organization, placing great strain on the health systems of some of Africa's poorest countries.
Sierra Leone now has the highest number of cases, at 454, surpassing neighboring Guinea where the outbreak originated in February.
Angry crowds gathered outside the country's main Ebola hospital in Kenema in the West African country's remote east where dozens are receiving treatment for the virus and threatened to burn it down and remove the patients.
Residents said that police fired tear gas to disperse the crowds and said that a nine-year-old boy was shot in the leg by a police bullet.
Assistant Inspector General Alfred Karrow-Kamara said on Saturday that the protest was sparked off by a former nurse who had told a crowd at a nearby fish market that "Ebola was unreal and a gimmick aimed at carrying out cannibalistic rituals".
He said that calm had now been restored to Kenema on Saturday, adding that a strong armed police presence was in place around the clinic and the local police station.
Some health workers from the clinic have been reported absent from work because of "misconceptions by some members of the community," according to a local doctor.
The report goes on to say that the patient who escaped (or was kidnapped) from a Freetown hospital yesterday has been "turned in after seeking refuge in the house of a traditional healer."