Abacha causing abasha and cholera in Isolo, Lagos

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Sometimes, I can’t help but sit and wonder who do us this thing? Why is it that in 2016, we are still battling some of the most basic scourges? Yes, Nigeria is a tropical country. Diseases, bacteria and all things yucky thrive in humid heat. But this is a country where range rovers and exotic cars are everywhere! This is the country where lavish lifestyles are the order! Does it mean we have money and no sense? (Don’t answer that). So why are we still battling cholera? Why are people dying from very curable and preventable diseases?

According to the Vanguard, Lagos State Government disclosed that 45 cases of cholera disease has been recorded in Isolo area. Six people have already died as a result of this outbreak.

The State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris says that the main source of the outbreak has been traced to local consumption of Igbo salad called Abacha, a staple food of the residents of Isolo council area.

His words:

“Some domestic wells within the communities are also suspected. Samples of Abacha salad and well water have been collected and sent to the Lagos State Drug Quality Control Laboratory for analysis.

“Samples were collected from 15 cases and taken to the central public health laboratory, Yaba. There were no growths, however continuous culture yielded Vibro cholerae from 7 out of 15 samples. The Vibro cholera was late confirmed to be Ogawa strain.

“The report of the analysis revealed the presence of vibro cholerae, Salmonella species and E. Coli in abacha and one of the two well water samples.”

He explained that 26 cases of the disease were managed at Isolo General Hospital and Lagos Mainland Hospital. 22 have been discharged, one died, and three are still on admission at Lagos Mainland Hospital.

“All the three cases are still on admission and in stable conditions. 17 of the cases were managed at private health facilities in Isolo. Out of the 17 cases, three died. All 14 cases on admission have been discharged”.

Symptoms and Preventive Measures

The symptoms of the disease includes nausea, profuse diarrhoea, vomiting, fever, leg cramps, and in severe cases leads to dehydration, coma or death.

“The risk of contracting the disease is mainly by poor water and environmental sanitation, including open defecation”, the Commissioner alerted. Lagosians are being asked to imbibe personal hygiene: “Lagosians should endeavour to wash their hands with soap and water frequently and thoroughly, especially after using the rest room. Boil water before drinking, especially if you are not sure of the source of water.” He also appealed to Lagosians to stop open defecation, which has been linked to outbreak of cholera and diarrhoea.

Really?? We are having to tell people to not poo in open waterways? Or to wash their hands when they’re done in the loo or before they eat? Basic things that our ancestors understood and practised?

Toh.

Perhaps nobody did this to us, after all. Perhaps we are simply our own worst enemies. I pray speedy recovery to those who are still ill; peaceful rest to those who have passed; sense to those who are still lacking it.

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