A cholera outbreak has killed 16 people and has infected 176 others in Adamawa and Kano states, a medical official said on Wednesday. While 12 have been confirmed dead in Adamawa, four others have been killed, following a fresh cholera outbreak at Wulari settlement in the Kumbotso Local Government Area of Kano State.
“So far, 12 people have died from the disease and there are many more cases,” said the Medical Director of the General Hospital, Mubi, Ezra Sakawa, told Reuters.
“We have little manpower to deal with an outbreak of such magnitude,” Sakawa said, adding that nurses were on strike.
Also, the Director of Public Health in the Adamawa State Ministry of Health, Dr. Bwalki Dilli, has said that the number of those infected by cholera in Mubi had increased from 134 to 176.
Northeast Nigeria is ground zero for Nigeria’s nine-year war against Islamist insurgency Boko Haram and its offshoot, now Islamic State’s West Africa ally.
The conflict has spawned one of the world’s largest humanitarian crises, with millions of people displaced and in need of aid to survive.
Those conditions are ripe for any outbreak of disease, such as cholera, to be deadly on a wide scale, humanitarian workers say.
Mubi, although less affected by the humanitarian crisis, has been attacked repeatedly by suspected Boko Haram militants, killing scores of people.
Dilli told News Agency of Nigeria on Wednesday in Yola, that no additional death had been recorded apart from the initial 12.
He said that sufficient drugs had been mobilised for the patients receiving treatment in the Mubi General Hospital with the support of the World Health Organisation and UNICEF.
“The outbreak is still contained within the Mubi North and Mubi South Local Government Areas of the state,” Dilli said
Also speaking to NAN, the Chairman of Mubi North LGA, Alhaji Musa Bello, said the outbreak started following a downpour that flooded many sources of water particularly wells in rural communities.
In Kano, one of the parents of the deceased, Mallam Mohammadu Auwal, told newsmen that two of his children Izeru Auwal, 11, and 10-year-old Abdullahi Auwal, were hospitalised, after exhibiting the symptoms of cholera.
“They were vomiting and passing watery stool at the same time. We rushed them to the Yusuf Maitama Hospital in Konar Dawaki, Kano where they eventually died,” Auwal said.
Also, one Suleiman Jingi told newsmen on Wednesday that he lost two of his children, Aisha Jibril, age three and four-year-old Suleiman to cholera.
The Chairman of Kumbotso Local Government, Kabiru Panshekara, also confirmed the incident, saying he was briefed about the death of three children.
He said that urgent steps had been adopted to halt the spread of the disease in the area, adding that he had reported the outbreak to the state Ministry of Health.
This, Panshekara added, was to provide effective treatment to victims of the disease.