Zamfara records 350 malaria deaths in 6 months

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By; MOHAMMED MUNIRAT NASIR, Gusau.
Zamfara recorded 350 malaria deaths in the first six months of 2016 out of the about 80, 000 reported malaria cases in the state hospitals.
This was disclosed by the State Malaria Elimination Programme (SMEP), Zamfara State Manager, Hamisu Dauran at the flag off /Zonal Training Community Engagement to Create Demand for Malaria Commodities in Zamfara organized by the Nigerian Inter-Faith Action Association (NIFAA).
Dauran said sadly in the first and second quarters of this year, 276 children under the ages of 5 years were lost while 74 pregnant women also died of malaria within the period.
He added that the statistics were gotten from government health facilities only excluding those unreported malaria cases and those treated at the private health centres.
 
The SMEP manager said malaria can be eliminated in the country, if adequate preventive measures such as using mosquito nets, he however chided some stakeholders whom he claimed are sabotaging the fight against malaria.
 
”Most Treated Mosquito Nets which are supposed to be given to people in Zamfara for free, are being sold to traders in Sokoto, Kano and other neighboring states by some stakeholders, this is very unfortunate because malaria is a silent killer which is more dangerous than the dreaded AIDS and Boko Haram,” he said.
 
Earlier, NIFAA Executive Director, Bishop Sunday Onuoha described mosquitoes as the greatest enemy of Nigerians as malaria claims about 30,000 lives annually in Nigeria.
 
He said the main objective of NIFAA is to foster unity hence the involvement of the religious leaders in the fight to eliminate malaria in the county.
 
”Since mosquitoes have no respect for any religion, we must come together as religious leaders to fight our common enemy because religious leaders commands a a lot of respects among followers, so any message by religious leaders is well respected by the people,” he said.
 
The Emir of Gusau, Alhaji Ibrahim Bello represented by a senior District Head in the Emirate, Alhaji Bashir Kabir Danbaba tasked government to be more proactive and sincere in the implementation of its programmes by involving the religious leaders who are more closer to the grassroots.
 
The Emir challenged the Imams and Pastors to ensure that the message get to their followers as the fight against malaria is a collective battle that must be won.
The NIFAA training brought together Imams and Pastors from three local government areas namely Gusau, Kauran Namoda and Talata Mafara.

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