A businessman who was quarantined for Ebola has spoken of his relief to be given the all- clear.
Michael English found himself at the centre of an Ebola scare during an investment business trip to Macedonia with his colleague Colin Jaffray.
Mr Jaffray, 58, became ill with fever and vomiting at their hotel and sadly died shortly after being taken to a Macedonian hospital last Thursday.
Because there were two African stamps on his passport the authorities feared Ebola, and all the hotel guests were placed in strict quarantine while tests could rule it out.
Mr English, who is 62 and from Flitton, was not allowed to leave the premises and was under constant medical supervision in case he showed symptoms of the deadly disease.
He was cleared to leave on Saturday evening and promptly caught a ‘red-eye’ flight back to his Brook Lane home.
He said: “I arrived early on Sunday morning and it was a relief to be back.
“I’m also very pleased to be given the all-clear. I would have hated to be responsible for bringing Ebola to Flitton. At least I can shake hands with people safely again now!”
A foreign investment expert who is working on improving Macedonia’s export trade, Mr English is convinced his colleague’s ‘English sense of humour’ prompted the Ebola scare.
He said: “My theory is that he joked, “Oh, it’s Ebola” and they took him seriously.”
Mr Jaffray, who it is believed suffered other health problems, had been ill for two days in his hotel room but refused to see a doctor.
Mr English, who missed his inauguration ceremony at Ampthill Rotary Club due to his quarantine, has paid tribute to the “extremely clever” and popular colleague.
“He will be missed by many people and his death was highly distressing,” he said.