By Peter Duru
MAKURDI- The United Nations Children Fund, UNICEF, has said that of the yearly 800,000 global deaths from malaria infection, about 300,000 are Nigerians.
UNICEF added that over 97 per cent of the country’s population are also at risk of the disease.
Chief of UNICEF Field ‘A’ Office, Enugu, Mr. Charles Nzuki, made this known while speaking with newsmen in Makurdi, Benue State.
Nzuki said that most of the victims were children below the age of five, pointing out that the country was responding to cases of infant mortality by increasing appropriate malaria treatment for targeted groups through the implementation of the Affordable Medicines for Malaria, AMFM, and massive distribution of 63 million long lasting insecticidal nets.
He said much still needed to be done to confront the challenges posed by the malaria scourge.
According to him, approximately 90 per cent of these deaths occur in Africa where malaria accounts for about one out of every six of such deaths.