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Social media users react to confirmed Zika case

Saturday, January 30, 2016 | 2:15 PM    

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — With news emerging that the first confirmed case of the Zika virus has been identified in Jamaica, several people have taken to social media to express their fear and concern.

The confirmed case involves a four-year-old child from Portmore, St Catherine.

On Twitter, users are concerned about public awareness as well as their personal well-being. MarcusMarleyMalcolm was one such user who tweeted, “no such announcement on MOH website or social media???”

Meanwhile @sexyshyb admitted that “this got me a little scared.”


@Kashiefmckenzie encouraged his friend @CadLatMor saying “Stay inside girl” upon being made aware of the news on the Jamaica Observer twitter account.

@melbeina voiced her intentions to leave the island for safety in her tweet stating “I need to shoob”

At the same time on Facebook, users shared their knowledge of the virus with each other.

“Speculations continued as to whether this is the first case of the virus in the island or is it in fact the first confirmed case,” Randi Walcott shared his belief that this was not the first case of the disease in the island.

“Confirm, or it just reach the point where them CAN'T keep it covered up anymore,” was the view of one commenter named Ingrid Mckellar. Several other bloggers shared her opinion.

Randi Walcott stated, “This isn't the first case, from last year someone that I know had it and gave birth to a baby that died because of it. The government needs to tell people the truth about how long they've known about it.”

Stacy Love agreed with Walcott’s opinion and stated “so agree with Randi Walcott! Because if this little boy has now recovered that means he got infected from last week! So how him catch the virus in the first place??? It must have been here from long time!!!! Damn these health people weh nuh stop tek Jamaican people fi idiot!!!!”

Other people sought to give advice to other bloggers not to overreact. Shauna Exceptionall Moore-Brown wrote, “Lawd if unnuh read up pon d virus unnuh wouldn't deh yah a tink it's d end of d world. The virus is only fatal to the unborn babies and not all either mostly those in the first trimester. Ppl will have it and don't even know. Other than the pregnant women those with weakened immune system is prone to catch it too, nothing special there. Just be informed and try as best to keep your environment clean and mosquito free.”

Jermaine Bell sated “Zika virus is new and improved, in the late 1947 to 1948, the zika virus came out in Uganda it was a flu , fever , pain and some rashes now it is causing babies head to be very small, this break out in Brazil comes three years after the richest man in the world Mr Bill gates and his wife came to Brazil saying they were fighting against dengue, their company released 2 million lab mosquitoes to breed with the natural mosquitoes, now we have a new upgrade zika virus in a area with the most blacks after Africa, this isn't the first time Mr Bill gates medical team have done damage to blacks in the name of medicine and science”

And among the opinions and criticisms, some bloggers have sought divine intervention to protect them from the virus. Josh Karl commented “Blood of Jesus against this Zika Virus. Plan of the devil to hault God's plan for Mankind multiplying on earth. This virus will be sent back to the pits of hell.”

There are also people who are apparently using the virus to judge the capacity of the new health minister.

 Kevin K British Paul stated “It's finally reach Jamaica, let's see how the new Health Minister deal with this one, the last one didn't do a good job, one more test for Portia Lead administration. Jamaican Should do there part has well!”

David Wright

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