(Adds reaction from African Minerals, London Mining)
FREETOWN, Sept 25 (Reuters) - Sierra Leone has put three more districts under indefinite quarantine in a bid to fight Ebola, President Ernest Bai Koroma said in a statement, which means five of the country’s 14 districts have now been isolated.
The quarantined districts include Port Loko and Bombali in the north and Moyamba in the south, according to a statement Koroma gave late on Wednesday.
“The isolation of districts and chiefdoms will definitely pose great difficulties for our people in those districts,” Koroma said. “(But) the life of everyone and the survival of our country take precedence over these difficulties.”
The World Health Organisation said on Thursday the death toll for the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, the worst on record, has killed 2,917 people this year, including nearly 600 people in Sierra Leone.
Iron ore miner African Minerals has its rail and port services in Port Loko district but the company said that it had not been impacted in any way by the restrictions.
“African Minerals’ vehicles and iron ore trains are also not restricted,” it said.
London Mining, which has an iron ore concession in Port Loko district, was not immediately available for comment on the new measures.
The move follows a three-day countrywide lockdown at the weekend that Koroma said had been a success but exposed “areas of greater challenges”. (Reporting by Umaru Fofana; Writing by David Lewis; Editing by Sonya Hepinstall and Janet Lawrence)