BENIN CITY – The Edo State Government has issued fresh alert to residents in the state following report of outbreak of the disease in other parts of the country, exacerbated by bush burning and other activities that drive rats from the wild into people’s homes.
In a statement, Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Communication Strategy, Mr. Crusoe Osagie, said: “We want residents in the state to take extra precaution against Lassa Fever disease. The disease is prevalent during dry season as burning of surrounding bushes is common practice. The rats which spread the diseases may find shelter in human habitation as a result of bush burning.”
He called on residents in the state especially those residing in endemic areas to adopt preventive measures in order to ward off the disease.
“Governor Godwin Obaseki has made efforts to halt the spread of Lassa Fever in the state. If residents ignore this warning, it may expose them to the disease, as experts have linked the dry season when bush burning is rampant to the resurgence of the disease,” the governor’s aide said.
He noted, “It is important for residents in the state to be cautious to guard against the resurgence of the disease.”
Osagie identified the preventative steps to include, “People should protect their foodstuffs and water from rats through storage in well covered containers. Avoid bush burning that can drive rats into people’s homes from the surrounding bush. The environment should be clean always.”
He urged residents to ensure that they report suspected cases of the disease by calling the following numbers: 08033380188; 08023345987; and 08084096723.
According to him, “People should ensure that they wash their hands frequently in addition to avoiding contact with infected persons. Any person with fever should go the hospital promptly. Eliminate rats from your homes and communities. Cook your food thoroughly.
“Residents in the state should avoid eating raw food that are not properly stored in covered containers. If possible, people should suspend the drinking of garri.”