By G9ija

Benue State government has said that the strange disease that claimed 20 lives in a part of the state has been verified to be yellow fever.x

The state’s Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mrs. Ngunna Adingi, disclosed this, yesterday when she briefed newsmen at the end of the State Executive Council meeting.

According to the commissioner, the result of samples collected and sent to the National Reference Laboratory revealed that the disease was yellow fever.

Adingi, who stated that the state government had resolved to vaccinate the people of the council and neighbouring local councils, said: “The results from which they got the test, we found out that the people actually died of yellow fever.

“Our appeal to the people of Ogbadibo is that they should make themselves available for vaccination because the governor has asked that people be vaccinated not only in Ogbadigbo but also the close-by local councils such as Okpokwu and Ado local councils.”

MEANWHILE, the Enugu State government has confirmed “strange deaths” as a result of the spread of strange disease to three more local councils in the state.

It listed the councils as Nsukka, Isiuzo, and Igboetiti, even as it sympathised with families that have so far lost relations as a result of the disease.

It, however, stated that officials of the Health Ministry had visited the affected local councils and collected samples for testing as was done for victims in Igboeze North Local Council.

The state’s Commissioner for Health, Dr. Ikechukwu Obi, who confirmed the fresh cases of the strange disease, said: “New set of samples from these local councils have been sent to the National Reference Laboratory at the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, for a thorough and complete examination to determine conclusively the reasons for these new set of reports and the results are expected early this week.”

He said that the state government was making efforts to contain its spread the same way it did at Igboeze North Local Council, adding that it was partnering with Federal Government agencies and other international agencies to do so.

“The state’s Ministry of Health’s Rapid Response Team, Local Council Rapid Response Teams, International and National Partners have also visited these councils to investigate the reports and take samples for testing just as was done for victims at Igboeze North,” he said.

Obi, who extended heartfelt condolences of the state government to all those who have lost loved ones, urged residents to remove mosquito breeding sites around their environment.

He said: “Yellow fever vaccination is not for treatment of Yellow fever; it is for prevention. If you have been recently vaccinated against the ailment, you do not need to be vaccinated again.”