5 confirmed killed as cholera hits SW Nigeria

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ABUJA, Nov. 29 (Xinhua) -- Five people have so far been confirmed killed by cholera which has hit Nigeria's southwestern state of Ogun over the past 10 days.

The government of Ogun on Friday said at least four communities in the Abeokuta-North local government area of the state have been affected by the water-borne disease.

Cholera is a highly virulent disease characterized in its most severe form by a sudden onset of acute watery diarrhea that can lead to death.

Twelve confirmed cases of the disease have been reported so far, Adesanya Ayinde, the permanent secretary of health in Ogun, told reporters in the city of Abeokuta, the state capital.

Ayinde said the index case was recorded on November 19.

According to the local official, there had been fumigations in the affected communities in order to arrest the spread of the disease through the killing of the causative organism.

He said eight of the 12 confirmed cases were reported from local health facilities and four others were picked in the communities and all cases were confirmed through laboratory tests.

To further curtail the spread of the disease, Ayinde said the government had commenced screening of local sources of water in the affected communities.

The official also warned local residents of the state to desist from open defecation, saying any house found without toilet would be sanctioned.

On November 20, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari signed an executive order committed to ending open defecation throughout the country by 2025 in consonance with the commitment to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Whilst signing the document, Buhari also declared a state of emergency on Nigeria's water supply, sanitation, and hygiene sector, saying the action will reduce the high prevalence of water-borne diseases which caused preventable deaths in different parts of the country.

The outbreak of cholera in Nigeria has remained persistent since the beginning of 2018.

In 2018, the Nigeria Center for Disease Control confirmed more than 16,000 cholera-related cases across the country. Enditem

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