October 20, 2023

Cholera hits Ogun as 236 cases recorded, 12 killed

NCDC confirms 3,208 deaths from cholera in 31 states, FCT ― NCDC


By James Ogunnaike

ABEOKUTA—No fewer than 12 persons have lost their lives to cholera in Ogun State, in the last one month.

Vanguard gathered that the state government had, on September 17, alerted residents of the state on the outbreak of the disease in Ijebu North local government area of the state, which later spread to Abeokuta North and Abeokuta South council areas.

Commissioner for Health, Dr. Tomi Coker, who confirmed the cholera outbreak, said 236 cases have been recorded so far, while 12 fatalities recorded.

Coker who disclosed while updating on the cholera outbreak after a stakeholders’ engagement in Abeokuta, said “high level of open defecation, poor waste management and poor water source. Unfortunately, we have a report of 246 cases and there have been at least about 12 deaths, which brings us to fatality rate of 44.6 percent.

“This is slightly high for a state like ours because we are educated. And from what we found out that’s actually promoting the cholera outbreak is the fact that there’s high level of open defecation in the state.

“It started in Ijebu North Local Government where we have 217 cases, but now we have more reports. We have some from Abeokuta North last week. We have two reports from Abeokuta South.

“It is unfortunate that our people still engage in open defecation, unaware that fecal materials enter shallow wells, which many of them use as water sources. For instance, in Ijebu-North Local Government, we found 52 shallow wells and microbiological testing revealed that 75 percent of these wells had evidence of fecal contamination with coliform bacteria.

“We will work with our colleagues in the Environment Ministry to ensure sanitation, promote the use of appropriate sanitary facilities in homes, and construct sanitary wells. These wells should be well-built and less likely to be contaminated by fecal material, especially during the period of incessant rainfall and flooding, which washes fecal material into our water sources.”