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Politics

13 Killed As Strange Disease Strikes In Zamfara State

Disease

There are concerns currently in Zamfara State as medical facilities and official sources confirmed to journalists that a strange illness is spreading across the state.

Reports revealed that the number of casualties linked to an unidentified illness, predominantly affecting children and women, in specific areas of Zamfara State has now reached 13.

Data gathered from hospitals and government records revealed a total of 505 instances reported in Maradun, Shinkafi, and Gusau Local Government Areas.

Further investigations indicated that the outbreak had extended to Isa and Zurmi LGAs in Sokoto and Zamfara states, respectively.

Naijaonpoint understands that the disease was initially identified in Tsibiri village in Maradun LGA in February of this year.

A source who spoke to newsmen on Monday revealed that Tsibiri has been grappling with the illness since its emergence, stating that as of Sunday, May 12, 2024, there were four confirmed fatalities, 228 cases, and 10 individuals transferred to the Shehu Shagari Disease Control Centre in Gusau due to severe complications.

“Most patients with minor complications have received treatment and have been discharged from the Primary Healthcare Centre (PHC) in Tsibiri,” the source reportedly told Daily Trust.

In a similar fashion, reports from Shinkafi LGA indicated that the outbreak was identified in Galadi village in April after reports of severe fever and abdominal issues.

A health worker at the PHC in Shinkafi disclosed that six fatalities were confirmed among the 100+ cases reported, with more than 60 patients facing severe complications being transferred to the Shehu Shagari Disease Control Centre. He highlighted the apparent spread of the disease to neighbouring regions, sparking concerns about containment.

As a result, he urged the governments of Sokoto and Zamfara states to dispatch additional medical professionals to the affected zones to manage the situation before it spreads further.

A Maradun resident, Musa Salisu, expressed concerns about the potential escalation of the disease in the town and emphasized the necessity of the authorities’ preemptive actions.

He pointed out the added risk posed by the prevailing banditry situation, particularly the vulnerability of Maradun General Hospital due to its proximity to the bandits’ hideouts.

Salisu cautioned that these circumstances might discourage locals from seeking medical help out of fear of bandit attacks.

Earlier, the Zamfara State Government officially acknowledged the occurrence of an unusual disease in the local government areas of Maradun, Shinkafi, and Gusau.

The Commissioner for Health, Dr Aisha Anka, described the symptoms of the illness as abdominal distension, fluid accumulation, enlarged liver and spleen, fever, and weakness resulting from the consumption of contaminated water.

The government promptly notified the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and is actively involved in implementing emergency response strategies to determine the cause and prevent further spread of the outbreak. Additionally, samples have been dispatched to laboratories in Lagos and Abuja for analysis.

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