According to the Motion Sponsor, Nigeria is yet to record or confirm any cases, but the outbreak of Anthrax in Ghana poses a great public health risk to Nigeria, especially if ignored due to unpreparedness or unawareness.
The Senate has called on the federal government to raise the level of awareness on the outbreak of Anthrax disease, symptoms for early detection and prevention through intensive awareness campaigns to sensitise Nigerians.
This is as it also urged the Federal government and its relevant agencies to urgently commence a nationwide vaccination of livestock with the Anthrax spore vaccine particularly in the border state.
These were contained in motion “on the need to address the low level of awareness and preparedness to prevent the outbreak of Anthrax in Nigeria”, sponsored by Senator Ezenwa Onyewuchi (LP, Imo East) at Wednesday’s plenary.
Speaking on the motion, Onyewuchi noted that there is an outbreak of a deadly disease known as anthrax disease across the ECOWAS region, including Ghana and Togo.
He recalled that an alarm was raised by the federal government over the deadly disease on the 12th of June, amidst Democracy Day Celebration.
He noted the Public Health Advisory jointly signed by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural development and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, Nigeria is at a high risk of importing this disease from Ghana, where it has been confirmed in both humans and animals.
Onyewuchi noted that while Nigeria is yet to record or confirm any cases, the outbreak poses a great public health risk to Nigeria, especially if ignored due to unpreparedness or unawareness.
He further stressed that the deadly disease is common in animals and can be easily transferred to humans through inhalation or consumption of infected foods.
“Anthrax is primarily a disease of animals, non-vaccinated animals with anthrax can easily transmit it to man through the inhalation of anthrax spores or consumption of contaminated/infected animal products such as hides and skin, meat or milk.”
Senator Osita Ngwu, in supporting this motion, informed that the deadly disease “can last for 3 months in water, and last for several months in milk and cow meat commonly known as kpomo.”
In adopting the motion, the Senate also mandated its Committee on Legislative Compliance to ensure compliance.