Gov. Nasiru El-Rufa’i of Kaduna State and his Sokoto State counterpart, Aminu Tambuwal on Tuesday pledged total support to end the spread of Cerebrospinal Meningitis (CSM).
The two governors made the commitment during an emergency meeting with members of Northern Traditional Leaders Committee on Primary Health Care, in Kaduna.
Rufa’i expressed sadness over the recorded number of deaths across the country, saying the state has recorded 17 cases in 11 local government areas from January to date.
According to him, only one confirmed case of type C meningitis and one death were recorded in the state.
“The State Government have intensified surveillance and engage the media on public enlightenment on meningitis.
“While repositioning appropriate medicine and medical supply in our hospitals for free, active case management of suspected meningitis and prevention is going on.
“We acknowledge the role of the World Health Organization in providing technical and logistic support and also thank the Federal Government for its quick intervention in the fight against the disease,’’ he said.
He noted that early awareness and intervention has slowed down the spread of the disease.
“We hope that the royal fathers will take up the battle like that of polio to curtail further spread.
“We are confident that same success will be achieved and prevent future reoccurrence,’’ el-Rufa’i added.
On his part, Tambuwal said Sokoto state had developed active collaboration with traditional leaders to address various health challenges.
According to him, the state have recorded no fewer than 1000 cases in seven local governments.
“The state government and traditional leaders are collaborating to create awareness on how to increase ventilation and decongest homes.
“The Federal Ministry of Health has supported the state with over 20,000 doses of vaccines, but our target is to have two million vaccines for those eligible to receive the vaccination,’’ he said.
Also speaking, the representative of the Department for International Development (DFID), Dr Salma Kolo expressed the organisation’s concern over the CSM spread.
According to her, since the outbreak of the epidemic, DFID has contributed 800,000 doses of vaccines through WHO.
“It is part of our activities to ensure that cases of meningitis were treated using all available resource within our limit to support government and use existing platform to create awareness.
“I want to appeal to state governors to put more effort in strengthening the health sector, especially the PHC
“We in Northern Nigeria are not privileged, especially the vulnerable groups who are mainly women and children that are jobless and have no access to fund. Their care must be provided free,’’ she said. (NAN)