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Kogi traces strange killer disease to gastroenteritis.



Kogi state governor Yahaya Bello
Kogi: state traces strange disease, dispels casualty figure.

By Stephen Adeleye

The rampaging unknown disease which has killed many people in Kogi state has been diagnosed to be gastroenteritis.

It is reported that more than 62 persons have been killed in two weeks when the situation came to limelight, but Kogi State Commissioner for Health, Dr Saka Audu, said on Sunday that the casualty is exaggerated.

He said the figure was given by local leaders in the affected areas and was yet to be verified by government.

“ We will investigate and trace the dead people to the grave yard and come up with the correct figure,’’ he said.

He called for calmness, in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Lokoja as the disease has been traced to be gastroenteritis and malaria.

The state Ministry of Health, had in a statement, said that the disease killed many people in Okunran, Okoloke and Isanlu-Esa in Yagba West Local Government Area.

“The current information available to us is that the disease actually started six weeks ago in Okoloke village in Yagba West, which is a settlement that is predominantly inhabited by Fulani herdsmen.

“There have been cases of reported deaths following abdominal pain, vomiting and diarrhoea, but the patients who showed signs of illness had since been evacuated and transported to Kogi State Specialist Hospital Lokoja, for better treatment.

“So far, we have evacuated 39 patients from Okoloke area and only six of them were admitted and have shown significant sign of improvement while others have since been discharged.

“Out of the six that were admitted, three of them were diagnosed of gastroenteritis and the remaining three were just cases of malaria, and they have shown remarkable signs of improvement,” Audu said.

He also stressed that the disease was not Lassa fever, saying the result of samples taken from the patients to Irua General Hospital for investigation proved negative.

“We want to assure the general public that government is doing all that is humanly possible to stay on top of the situation and forestall further loss of lives.

“We will continue to inform the public as the investigation progresses,’’ Audu said. (NAN)

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