S Leone bans public Christmas festivities over Ebola
Authorities in Sierra Leone have banned all public celebrations of Christmas and New Year in a bid to tackle Ebola.
The country is also due to mount house-to-house searches in the capital Freetown to find hidden cases of Ebola.
President Ernest Bai Koroma also said that Sunday trading would be banned and travel between districts restricted.
Sierra Leone is one of the countries worst hit by Ebola, which has killed more than 6,800 people this year.
In his statement, President Koroma said the searches aimed to “break the chain of transmission”, the AFP news agency reported.
He added: “Do not hide the sick”.
In addition to the blanket Sunday trading ban, the new measures will include time restrictions on Saturday and weekday shopping.
Freetown has recorded more than 50% of all Ebola infections in Sierra Leone over the past two weeks.
Our correspondent in Sierra Leone, Umaru Fofana, said the measures were partially aimed at controlling crowds.
He said people in Freetown continued to gather on the streets or go jogging along the beach despite the Ebola threat.