28 Sep 2007

Fiji police officer dies of malaria contracted in Liberia

9:34 am on 28 September 2007

A Fiji police officer who spent more than a year in Liberia on United Nations peace duties has died of malaria within days of his return.

Sergeant Kameli Bulinalulu, 40, left for Liberia in August last year and had only just returned when he was taken to hospital on Sunday.

He died two days later of cerebral malaria which he had contracted in Liberia.

A Fiji police spokesman says he is the first victim of malaria among the officers who have served in Liberia, Sudan and Solomon Islands all of which have the disease.

The spokesman says all officers going for UN duty in the three countries are given malaria medication and cautioned to take it regularly.

All officers are medically tested before their departure from Fiji and on their return but Sergeant Bulinalulu's infection was not detected.