Cholera kills at least 30 in Enugu,Jigawa
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A cholera outbreak in Jigawa State has killed no fewer than 30 people with more than 2,000 hospitalised in the past two months in the state.
This came as seven people were confirmed killed by cholera in Enugu State.
Permanent Secretary, Jigawa State Ministry of Health, Dr Salisu Mu’azu, who confirmed the outbreak, said most of the infected cases were children recorded in nine local government areas of the state.
Mu’azu listed Hadejia, Dutse, Kirikasamma, Birnin Kudu and Ringim as some of the areas worst hit by the outbreak. He said of the 2,000 infected cases, some had been discharged while others were still receiving free medical treatment in government hospitals.
The permanent secretary, who could not immediately say what was the cause of the outbreak, insisted that the Hadejia case could be linked to water pollution.
He alleged that there was the possibility of water contamination from an area where people practised open defecation near the water vendors, who collect and circulate the water to residents of Hadejia town.
Mu’azu said the state government was on top of the situation for now and has been providing necessary assistance to the residents in the affected areas.
He added that the United Nations International Children’s Education Fund, UNICEF, had supplied some medications and promised to send more soonest.
It would be recalled that Director-General of Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, Chikwe Ihekweazu, had said six states reported 1,786 suspected cases of cholera between June 20 and 26.
He listed the states as Bauchi, 1,239 cases; Kano, 362 cases; Niger, 62 cases; Zamfara, 55 cases; Kaduna, 59 cases, and Plateau, nine cases.
Meanwhile, in Enugu State, the Commissioner for Health, Ikechukwu Obi, in a statement said seven people died of cholera around New Artisan market in the state.
Director of Public Health and Disease Control, Ministry of Health, Boniface Okoro, on Monday, said seven more people had died of the infection in the area with 19 persons identified with the symptoms.
“Seven persons died initially on Saturday, but as of Monday, seven more deaths were confirmed, raising the fatality to 14,” he said.
He said many of the patients were taken to Enugu State University Teaching Hospital, while others were taken to a private hospital in the city.
He said upon receiving reports of the deaths, the ministry’s rapid response team carried out an immediate investigation and “it was observed that the patients presented with sudden onset of the passage of loose stool and vomiting.”
The director said the outbreak was due to poor hygiene, particularly, improper disposal of domestic and human wastes, and high consumption of untreated water in the area.
Okoro said the state government had launched an aggressive sensitisation campaign for residents to take precautionary steps towards preventing further spread.
He, however, said no other part of the state had been affected by the infection and pledged the commitment of the state to curb the infection before it spreads to other communities.