Tanzania not providing information on Ebola

Burial workers carry the remains someone who died of Ebola in Beni Congo on July 14. The World Health Organization has issued an unusual statement raising questions about whether Tanzania is covering up possible cases of the deadly Ebola virus. It is

Burial workers carry the remains someone who died of Ebola in Beni Congo on July 14. The World Health Organization has issued an unusual statement raising questions about whether Tanzania is covering up possible cases of the deadly Ebola virus. It is

The World Health Organization has accused Tanzania of failing to provide information on suspected cases of Ebola in the country, potentially styming efforts to curb the spread of the deadly virus.

There was no immediate reaction by Tanzanian authorities.

There is increased vigilance across the region after a 13-month outbreak of Ebola in the Democratic Republic of the Congo has killed more than 2,000 people.

A statement on Saturday said that on 10 September the organisation had learned of a suspected infection in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania's most populous city, in what would be the country's first Ebola case.

"We don't have Ebola patients in Tanzania", Mwalimu told a news conference in the commercial capital Dar es Salaam.

The WHO's statement refers in particular to a 34-year-old female doctor who was studying in central Uganda and returned to her native Tanzania with Ebola-like symptoms before dying in Dar es Salaam, Africa's fifth most populous city, on September 8.

The ongoing Ebola outbreak is the second-worst in history after more than 11,000 people died in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia between 2014 and 2016.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has appealed to Tanzanian authorities to share information on results of recent tests of what was described as a unusual disease that killed two people in the east African nation.

"Identified contacts of the deceased were unofficially reported to be quarantined in various sites in the country", the statement said.

The UN body also received unofficial reports that someone in Mwanza, western Tanzania, was suspected to have the disease, but tested negative.

She did not say if the two cases investigated included the death of the woman.

Tanzania has never had a case of Ebola.

World Health Organization spokesman Tarik Jasarevic told Al Jazeera that World Health Organization is ready to assist if an outbreak is confirmed in Tanzania and is "standing by to facilitate the delivery of various supplies, including vaccines and therapeutics - this will occur upon request by the government".

Officials in Tanzania's health ministry could not be reached for comment.

Uganda, which neighbours Congo, has already recorded several cases after sick patients crossed the border.

It will complement another vaccine produced by U.S. pharmaceutical giant Merck which has been administered to more than 220,000 people in a bid to curtail the outbreak. "This will occur upon request by the government", Jasarevic said, adding there were enough supplies of vaccine to provide if needed.

What has Tanzania said in response?

But the containment efforts have been hindered from the start by conflict in eastern DRC, as well as attacks on medical teams tackling the haemorrhagic fever amid resistance within some communities to preventative measures, care facilities and safe burials.

The WHO statement says the lack of information makes it hard to assess potential risks in an Ebola outbreak in Africa that has been declared a rare global health emergency.