At least two residents of Owerri, the capital of Imo State, have been feared dead with seven others quarantined as Lassa fever – which has resurfaced in other States – invaded the State, which is located in the South East of Nigeria.
The State Health Commissioner, Dr. Angela Uwakwem, who confirmed the incident to newsmen in Owerri on Wednesday said, “Lassa fever is in Owerri. It is confirmed.”
Uwakwem said two persons died of the virus after they were “referred out of” the Federal Medical Centre, Owerri.
The health commissioner said, “We have seven suspected cases of Lassa fever. Two are confirmed.
“The Imo State Government is working hard to establish the point of first contact. The media should also help us to enlighten our people.
“People should stop unnecessary shaking of hands. People should also stop eating exposed foods. The virus is caused by rats, so people should be encouraged to make use of rat poison in their homes.”
A doctor recently died after contracting the disease while treating a seven-month old baby in Kogi State.
While in Ondo State, it was gathered that no less than five people have been killed while 19 people have been hospitalised following the return of Lassa fever to the state.