The Anambra State Government has banned the drinking of garri in the state as a measure to keep the contraction of Lassa fever.
The state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Joe Akabuike, reported the ban while teaching inhabitants of the state on measures to stop the ailment, which is spreading in parts of the nation. In his words, he said
“The garri you see spread along the highway while you’re travelling is very risky to consume, especially when you drink it. It is better and surer consuming the ones you prepared yourself. We are by this enlightenment prohibiting the drinking of garri in the state.
“Like any other form of disease, good hygiene practices and taking precautions over all forms of symptoms among family members and friends will go a long way to curb the spread of diseases.
“Hand washing remains an effective way of preventing diseases. Families as well as corporate organisations should re-adopt the use of tip taps and hand sanitisers placed in public places.”
In the mean time, medical doctors across Kogi State on Tuesday met in Lokoja to pay their last regards to their associate, who kicked the bucket of Lassa fever on Sunday.
Ahmed kicked the bucket in Irrua, Edo State at 30 years old in the wake of taking care of a seven-month-old infant, who passed on a day after it was conceded.
At a parade held at the Federal Medical Center Lokoja on Tuesday, specialists communicated their pain in melodies.
They finished their parade at the authoritative piece of the FMC where the Chief Medical Director, Dr Olatunde Alabi, addressed them saying.
“Actually, the late Dr Idowu Ahmed is one of our new doctors that we have here and he has been very hardworking and dedicated to his duties. We are aware that there is an epidemic in the country and we are trying to put our own measures in place so that we don’t have further spread of the disease.”
The Kogi State Chairman of Nigerian Medical Association, Dr. Godwin Tijani, let one know of our journalists that people, who had contact with the perished, had been isolated.
“We feel saddened by the death of one of our colleagues. He is a young chap and after two months, he is no more. We will forever miss him.
“As I speak to you, some of his colleagues who had contact with him have been quarantined and some of them had started taking drugs to ensure the effect is not felt,”
If I'm asked if the ban on garri is a move in the right direction, I'll say, "Yes". The method at which garri is being processed in Nigeria is not usually hygienic. Adding to the unhygienic production process, the means of distribution is also inappropriate. You find garri being sold along the highways were cars excite the dust and particles around which in turn settle on the garri. Or you see garri being exposed to dirty environment and disease carrying insects. I don't think the ban will last or take much effect, but Nigerians should watch the garri which they consume on daily basis. A good suggestion is selling this cassava products in a clean environment. Also, companies or group of people who go into commercial production of garri should be checked to meet some hygienic standards.