John Adams, Minna
No fewer than 15 people have been confirmed dead following cholera outbreak in Bida Local Government Area of Niger State. Ten other persons are in critical condition at the Umoru Sanda Memorial Hospital, Bida, out of the total of the 60 cases of the disease that have been reported so far in the area.
Officials of the council have, therefore, raised the alarm over the spread of the disease, which they said must be urgently curtailed. An official letter from the Bida LGA, signed by the council secretary, Suleiman Sheshi, on behalf of the chairman, dated June 18, 2018, to the state commissioner for health, Dr. Mustapha Jibrin, said that the council had no capacity to contain the outbreak.
The letter, a copy of which was made available to our correspondent in Minna yesterday, called on the state government to urgently come to the rescue of the council, stressing that, at the time of the outbreak (Sunday), “only one medical doctor was on call at the hospital due to manpower shortage.”
“The general hospital is lacking medical consumables and adequate facilities to cater for the present ‘emergent’ health challenge. Fifteen out of the 60 people infected with the disease have been confirmed dead.
“The present situation at hand cannot be handled by the Bida LGA alone; part of the reason why this letter is written is to request for superior intervention from the state government. Prompt action from your part will, without any doubt, save a lot of lives presently at critical point of survival,” the letter read.
Meanwhile, the council has advised the people of the LGA to maintain the highest hygiene to avoid the spread of the disease. Specifically, the council warned against drinking unhygienic water, which is capable of spreading cholera, in addition to telling residents “to be careful on the consumption of fruits already sliced for re-sale by grocers, and herbal concoction prepared under poor hygienic conditions.”
“Person or persons suspected to have contacted cholera should be rushed to nearby hospitals for treatment without delay,” the council said. It added that “on no account should home treatment be an option.”
Jibrin said he was aware of the outbreak, and a team of five doctors has been sent to the area to prevent further casualties from the outbreak.