Sat. Apr 10th, 2021

Measles outbreak in Shiroro IDP camp amidst avian flu in Niger

A female health official tries to drop a polio vaccine into the mouth of a child at Kaiama town, 16 May 2005 in Bayelsa State. AFP PHOTO/PIUS UTOMI EKPEI

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Victoria Ogunrinde

The Internally Displaced Persons temporary camp in Kwatai in Shiroro Local Government Area of Niger State are currently suffering the outbreak of measles.

According to the Nation, majority of the children in the camp are currently down with measles and have not received adequate treatment.

Some of the community leaders who spoke to The Nation attributed the outbreak to the untidy, squalid and unhygienic nature of the camp.

One of the leaders, Sani Abu-bakar Yusuf Kokki lamented that the outbreak is unfortunate because the affected victims have already been impoverished as a result of the sustained insecurity in the council.

He called on the health authorities to come to the aid of the people as there is a need for urgent treatment.

“Considering the current weather conditions, if appropriate preventive measures are not taken by the authorities, an outbreak of other contagious and communicable diseases such as chickenpox, and cholera, among others, could follow.

“It is a huge understatement to say that these IDPs are vulnerable and prone to all sorts of miseries. It is in the light of the unfolding development that we are appealing to the authorities to urgently come to the aid of the affected victims,” he said.

In a related development, the Niger State government has announced an outbreak of avian influenza (flu) in a cluster of poultry farms in the state.

The Information Officer, Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries, Mr Abubakar Kuta, stated this in a statement made available to reporters in Minna.

Reports say poultry in the state were being infected by type “A” flu.

The statement disclosed that thousands of birds worth millions of naira have been lost to the flu.

It advised poultry farmers to be vigilant and to report any incident of sudden high mortality of their birds to the ministry.

The statement advised farmers to maintain strict farm hygiene, restrict movement of vehicles and people into their farms.

It also advised them to disinfect farm premises and utensils to check the transmission of the virus.

It also cautioned farmers against the exchange of egg crates and other equipment from other farms.

The statement advised the public and livestock marketers to minimise contacts with sick and dead birds.

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