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Cholera: FG to conduct sanitary inspections in schools, restaurants

Mohammad Abubakar on environmental protection Mohammad Abubakar on environmental protection

Mohammad Abubakar, minister of environment, says the federal government will deploy sanitary inspectors to schools and restaurants in the country as part of efforts to tackle cholera outbreak.

Speaking at a media briefing on Monday, the minister said environmental health surveillance of hotspot communities will also be conducted.

Abubakar added that the ministry has activated sanitation desks in the 36 state environment ministries and FCT, noting that there will also be sensitisation exercise across the country to enlighten citizens on how to prevent cholera.

“The ministry had requested the EHOs in the states and local governments across the country to intensify their efforts in carrying out sanitary inspection of premises,” he said.

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“[There will be] sanitary inspection of schools primary and secondary in affected communities as well as training of community volunteers on safe water handling, environmental sanitation and hygiene practices.

“Also, sanitary inspection of food business premises of affected communities, advocacy, sensitisation and community town hall meetings on control of open defecation practices and its health impact, among others.”

The minister, who expressed concern over the rate of cholera infections in the country, blamed the spread on the attitude of Nigerians towards sanitation and hygiene.

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“This year’s outbreak is very serious and has continued to ravage many states with more fatalities being reported on a daily basis,” he said.

“The country continues to suffer from cholera epidemic and other sanitation-enabled diseases every year. This is largely due to our collective behaviour and attitude towards environmental sanitation and hygiene practices which are very poor.”

Between January 1 and August 1, according to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), the country recorded over 800 deaths, and more than 30,000 suspected cases.

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