by Alli Mustapha
The Lagos State Government says it is collaborating with the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, the National Centre for Disease Control and African Field Epidemiology Network to tackle monkey pox epidemic.
The government said it had started a surveillance tour of livestock and bush-meat markets across the state. This, according to them, is to test animals for components of monkey pox.
The Commissioner for Agriculture, Gbolahan Lawal, stated this when he received members of the One Health Team of the National Centre for Disease Control, saying; “Monkey pox is a trans-boundary viral disease that is common among people that have contact with wild animals. It typically presents itself clinically as fever, rash and swollen lymph nodes.”
“Small pox is also a viral zoonotic disease caused by the monkey pox virus and it occurs primarily in tropical rainforest areas of Central and West Africa and it is mostly transmitted to people from animals although human to human transmission also occurs,” he added.
The Commissioner also stressed the government’s commitment to ensuring Lagosians are of sound health. He said that the government would do all that needed to be done to prevent the emergence of the disease in the state.
He said; “Government officials, representatives of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, National Centre for Disease Control and African Field Epidemiology Network have been sent to the field to conduct a surveillance of the monkey pox virus in livestock markets across the state.”
He also said that although Monkey – pox would be the major focus, it wouldn’t be the only disease, as other diseases would be look out for.
“The teams, while testing the animals for the presence of the monkey pox virus, would also test for other zoonotic viruses like the Lassa virus in small mammals and would as well provide epidemiology guidance.”