No fewer than 17 persons have died in Ebonyi and Plateau states following the outbreak of cholera.
In Ebonyi, the state government said three persons had died, while 12 other infected persons were currently responding to treatment in hospital.
The situation is worse in Plateau State, where 14 persons have been confirmed dead.
The acting Commissioner for Health in Ebonyi State, Dr. Richard Nnabu, gave the casualty figure after a visit to Amachi-Igwebuike village in the Agba community, Ishielu Local Government Area of the state.
According to him, through the efforts of the state government, the situation has been brought under control. Nnabu told journalists after the visit of the state epidemiologists to the area that the 12 suspected cases were being handled at the Agba General Hospital.
“Keeping the environment clean and hygienic, drinking safe water and good preservation of food items are very important practices to prevent the spread,” the acting commissioner stated.
Nnabu added that the deaths were a result of the refusal of the patients to go to the hospital for treatment.
He charged the people to report any case of cholera to the nearest health facilities or go straight to the general hospitals, where drugs had been provided for the treatment of the disease.
Some residents of the community blamed the outbreak of cholera on the non-availability of potable water in the area. They said they went as far as a neighbouring Onicha Local Government Council to get drinking water, while those who could not travel the long distance resorted to drinking dirty pond water.
In Plateau State, the Commissioner for Health, Dr. Nimkong Lar, while briefing reporters after the State executive council meeting in Jos on Wednesday, added that out of the 953 cases of infected persons recorded in the state, 910 had been discharged, while 29 patients were currently receiving treatment in various health facilities across the state.
Lar said the disease, which was previously recorded in the Jos North Local Government Area, had spread to 13 local government areas.
The commissioner further said the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control had visited the state to support efforts aimed at tackling the cholera outbreak.
As a way of mitigating the further spread of the disease, Lar cautioned residents to be conscious about the sources of their water and handle their fruits with care to avoid being victims.