The senate on Tuesday shot down a motion urging the federal government to distribute rat killers to Nigerians as a way of curbing the spread of Lassa fever.
Olanrewaju Tejuoso, a senator representing Ogun central, who moved the motion entitled: ‘The recent outbreak of Lassa fever in Nigeria’, had prayed the senate to urge “the federal government to consider giving out rat killers free of charge to the citizenry”.
“To reduce or totally eradicate rats from our environment as the level of poverty in the land will not encourage the purchase of rat killers as more important products of survival are taking priority and encourage corporate bodies to support this initiative by sponsoring purchase of these rodent killers to be distributed all over the country,” he said.
But the senate rejected his prayer.
The upper legislative chamber also rejected another prayer asking it to “commend the minister of health for his proactive measures taken so far and invite him and other relevant health agencies to brief the senate on the outbreak of the disease and how far the ministry has gone in its effort to curb the further spread of the disease.”
However, the senate resolved “to condole with the families of Nigerians who had lost their relations to the outbreak of this disease,” and urged “Nigerians to be very conscious and adhere to rules of personal hygiene and put in more effort to get rid of rodents from the environment to prevent the spread of the disease and to report any case of persistent high fever not responding to standard treatment for malaria and typhoid fever to the nearest health centre.”
Rats are carriers and transmitters of Lassa fever.
The disease has killed about 41 Nigerians, and there 25 confirmed and 93 suspected cases of the viral disease.
Isaac Adewole, minister of health, had at a news conference in Abuja on Tuesday said that there had been no new confirmed case or death in the last 72 hours.