From Desmond Mgboh, Kano
Four suspects have been arrested by security agencies as a result of their alleged complicity in the sales of an expired mixed -fruit and citric acid powder drink which has been linked to the death of four persons and the hospitalization of 284 others in the state.
Acting Head, Kano State Consumer Protection Council, Baffa Baba Danagundi to reporters that that the suspects were arrested in Minjibir town of the state adding that they were found with a total of 580 bags of the expired products in their possession.
He said that the lead suspect was notorious for the sales of expired products adding that the suspects were picked up following investigations that were conducted across markets where the juice were being sold- such as Sabon – Garri market, Singer Market and others.
Meanwhile, an official of the Kano State Ministry of Health has confirmed the death of four persons arising from the suspected consumption of the drinks
Kano State Commissioner of Health, Dr Aminu Ibrahim Tsanyawa, where speaking during a press conference, on Tuesday said that the disease broke out in the state five days ago adding that at least 284 persons in a three local government areas have been hospitalized by the diseased.
He noted samples from the patients have been sent to Abuja for analysis while adding that victims were currently receiving treatment at various hospitals in the state.
Speaking earlier, the State Epidemiologist, Dr Bashir Lawan who said four people had died of teh disease, disclosed that the casualties show symptoms of haematuria (bloody urine) or dark urine, fever, lethargy, and sometimes yellowness of the eyes (jaundice).
He stated that, “These symptoms are classical of ongoing haemolysis (breakage of red blood cells) and bleeding,” while adding that the index case was a six-year old girl whose case was reported on 6th March 2021.
“We initially suspected viral haemorrhagic fever, but the test results came back from the National Reference Laboratory as negative for Yellow fever and Lassa fever. But we are still awaiting the test of Dengue fever.”
He said that the state government has since designated a few hospitals for the treatment of persons affected by the suspected poisoning.
The hospitals included Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital (AKTH), Kano, Murtala Muhammad Specialists Hospital, Kano and Infectious Disease Hospital, Kano.
Others were Sheikh Jidda Hospital, Waziri Shehu Gidado Hospital, Rano General Hospital and two hospitals in Dawakin Tofa Local Government Areas of the state.