Hygiene Kits and water guards were on Thursday distributed to communities affected by Cholera in parts of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) by the The Federal Ministry of Water Resources.
The intervention is sequel to reported cases of deaths from the outbreak of cholera in many communities, according to the weekly Situation Report (SITREP) by the FCT Primary Health Care Development Board.
The Deputy Director WASH Response with the ministry, Ibiyemi Olu-Daniels, on a WASH Assessment, Sensitisation and Response to some communities affected by cholera, said the intervention was necessitated to forestall further occurrences.
According to him, the team is also carrying out water sample analysis to ascertain the causes and the pathogens polluting their water to forestall future occurrence.
He said affected communities had been classified as cholera hotspots, noting that the samples taken from their ground and surface water sources would be assessed in the ministry’s laboratory.
Olu-Daniels said the importance of hand washing could not be overemphasized, as it had a way of breaking faecal-oral transmission of diseases.
He said the water guard is to purify their water and kill all the germs while the hygiene kits distributed are to promote their hygiene culture, we have trained them on washing of hands at critical times.
He said they plan to sustain these interventions by ensuring that the federal reference laboratory in charge of the FCT would prioritise these communities as water sampling sites.
On preventive measures and sustainability of interventions carried out so far, Olu-Daniels said the site would be used as water sampling collection site to ascertain trends of contamination and ways to prevent cholera outbreaks.
He said members of the community had been urged to improve on their environmental sanitation, saying it was very poor and unacceptable.
“Littering of the environment with all kinds of wastes is a risk, dumping wastes close to water sources can contaminate the water bodies and lead to cholera outbreak.’’
The Desk Officer, Hygiene in the Ministry, Ayaba Kogbara, said there was the need to put proper waste disposal mechanisms in place, saying most cholera outbreaks originated from contaminated foods, vegetables, fruits and water.
She also urged the community members to build and use their toilets, noting that most cholera outbreaks were from these issues.
She further said Open Defecation practice can be traced to cholera, which is why they are begging them to teach their children to always use the toilets.
“If there are no soap or water available, you can pour ashes into the pit latrines, this will allow decomposing of the faecal matter quickly and reduce possible infections and smell’’.
The SITREP within the last one month noted that no fewer than 72 persons had died from confirmed cases of cholera in six area councils of the FCT.
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, (NCDC) reports that the country has recorded 37,819 suspected cases of cholera, 1,178 deaths in 23 states and the FCT as at August 14.
The affected states include Benue, Delta, Zamfara, Gombe, Bayelsa, Kogi and Sokoto.
Others are Bauchi, Kano, Kaduna, Plateau, Kebbi, Cross River, Niger, Nasarawa, Jigawa, Yobe, Kwara, Enugu, Adamawa, Katsina, Borno, Taraba and the FCT.