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Death of 25 children: Lagos community commences cleansing ritual

By Bose Adelaja & Monsuru Olowoopejo

Twenty-four hours after Lagos State Government confirmed the outbreak of a strange disease in Eti-Osa Local Government that killed over 25 children, traditional chiefs in Ikateland have put the blames at the door steps of the residents and have commenced cleansing rituals.

The affected children were said to have developed rashes similar to the symptoms of measles, and died two to three days after infection.

Speaking on behalf of the chiefs, Chief Opemilua Elegusi of Ikateland, in an interview with Vanguard, lamented that the unhygienic lifestyle adopted by the residents of Otodo-Gbame community has dented the image of Ikateland.

He noted that prior to the outbreak, the entire community was often filled with filth and stench. He said the residents, who are largely fishermen and traders, do not engage in sanitation even when the government had declared last Saturday of every month for the exercise.

He said the incident was a bad omen which requires urgent traditional steps by traditional leaders, who have stepped in to appease the gods of the land.

Earlier, while confirming the outbreak of the disease, spokesman for the state Ministry of Health, Mrs. Adeola Salako, said no further death had been recorded since February 10, when the epidemiological investigation team, led by epidemiologists from the ministry commenced investigation.


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