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Strange disease struck Benue, kills four



As Nigeria grapples to contain the deadly Lassa Fever ravaging about 19 states, another trouble seems to be looming after a strange disease reportedly struck Oye Obi, in Obi Local Government Area of Benue State and killed four people in rapid successions.

A concerned group, Igede National Youths Council, has in a letter to authorities said the strange sickness had within the past two weeks killed four people.

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According to the group the diseased persons include; Happiness Ogbu, Onah Ogbedu, Andy Edu and Wisdom Agwo.

According to the president-elect of the association, Andyson Egbodo, the victims developed the same symptoms of headache, vomiting, internal heat, stomach ache, weakness of the body and swollen stomach.

It read in part, “The sickness has so far killed four persons in two weeks. The four victims namely – Happiness Ogbu, Onah Ogbedu, Andy Edu and Wisdom Agwo.

“They developed the same symptoms of headache, internal heat, diarrhoea, vomiting, stomach ache, weakness of the body and swollen stomach and died alike.

“Our investigation revealed the health authorities in Oju have been briefed. The Igede National Youths Council is calling on the Benue State Government to, as a matter of urgency, do all within its powers to arrest the situation.

“We are not resting on our part in the area of mass mobilisation and awareness campaign on how to prevent its spread.

“Our investigation reveals that about six more persons as at today, Wednesday, 29 January, 2020 are already down developing the same symptoms, some of them have already been moved to the General Hospital, Oju.

The group called on members of the state assembly, National Assembly, government appointees of Igede extraction in the state or federal governments to help in arresting the ugly development.

When contracted, the state Commissioner for Health, Dr Sunday Ongbabo, who confirmed the strange sickness in the community said that the ministry had sent focal persons to the affected area to investigate the situation and ascertain the nature of the endemic.

“We have declared state of emergency on those kind of strange diseases in the state, put surveillance tracking down all the diseases and see how we can treat them.

“We are also in touch with the National Disease Control Centre in Abuja and the World Health Organisation to come to our aid so that we can identify the disease and enable us to protect others.

“We are just suspecting what is happening there because we have not actually tested the people to know the actual thing that is killing them.

“We are trying to curtail it, avoid its spreading. So far, three persons have been confirmed dead.” the commissioner said.