June 22, 2024

Cause of Cholera outbreak in Lagos yet to be identified – Abayomi


By Chioma Obinna

Contrary to media reports that the cholera outbreak in Lagos originated from ingestion of local tiger nut drink, the Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Prof Akin Abayomi, has said the cause is yet to be identified.

Disclosing the development on his X handle on Saturday, Akin Abayomi said the fresh cases were recorded as of 20th June 2024, 24 hours after the state announced an increase in deaths recorded from the disease.

Abayomi in series of infographics made available to Sunday Vanguard, revealed that cases were reported from Agege, Badagry, Ikeja, Mushin, Ajeromi-Ifelodun, Epe, Ikorodu, Ojo, Alimosho, and Eti-Osa, Kosofe, Oshodi-Isolo, Amuwo-Odofin, Ibeju-Lekki, Lagos Island, Shomolu, Apapa, Ifako-Ijaiye, Lagos Mainland, and Surulere.

He said that the Emergency Operations Centre, in collaboration with all relevant partners, is actively engaged in contact tracing, community-based surveillance, awareness campaigns, sample testing, and ensuring that confirmed cholera cases receive appropriate medical treatment.

He advised residents to adhere strictly to personal and environmental hygiene.

Although, there were speculations that the Lagos cholera may have emanated from locally-made tiger nut drinks, a source in the State Ministry of health, told Sunday Vanguard, that the cause of the outbreak was yet unknown as the state was still conducting investigations in different areas.

In a confirmation statement, Abayomi told Sunday Vanguard that the cause is yet to be identified.

“We have not been able to identify and batch of locally made beverages that contain the cholera bacteria as of now, but we are still searching.”

Also, when Sunday, Vanguard contacted the Director General of NAFDAC, Prof. Christianah Adeyeye, on the development, she said: “I am just hearing this. I have asked my director of food safety to find more information on it.”

In a related development, an unconfirmed report revealed that the NCDC has announced that the country has run out of cholera vaccines as the death toll increased across the country.

Although experts are calling for immediate deployment of vaccines for school children, it was also gathered that the agency’s Director General, Dr Jide Idris, said the country had placed an order for more vaccines from donor agencies.

The Agency was unavailable for comments at press time.