Katsina Governor Aminu Bello Masari has decried the lack of support for vigilante groups and hunters by security agencies in the State.
He lamented the Army and Police were not supportive enough of the recruitment and deployment of vigilantes and hunters by the State Government to combat banditry in forests and the rural communities.
Masari spoke at a mini town hall meeting involving heads of security agencies, first class traditional rulers, district heads, as well as members of the State Executive Council at the Government House Katsina for visiting Minister of information and Culture, Lai Mohammed,
He also condemned the attitude of some transport unions, including National Union of Road Transport workers (NARTO) and some district heads for undermining the implementation of the containment order banning junction parks and the supply of logistics to bandits in the forests.
He said: ’The attitude of the Military and the Police towards the recruitment, training and deployment of the vigilantes particularly in the rural communities, is undermining the fight against banditry in the State.
‘’The uncooperative and non- support of these agencies to the vigilantes is disturbing. if they don’t have a conducive atmosphere to operate side by side, how can they be effective?’’
‘’The low population of the security agencies deployed into the rural communities are supposed to be complimented by the vigilantes and hunters, who were expected to take over the security situation of the rural communities and villages at the end of every military operation.”
Masari further reported that bandits being chased out of their forest hideouts by the recent onslaughts and bombardments were relocating to the communities in search of food.
He expressed concerns that the retreating bandits are trooping into the villagers to steal harvests and other farm products as the harvest season is fast approaching.
The Minister of Information and Culture Minister told the Governor that he came to the State accompanied by 22 media houses to hear first-hand, ’’noble and bold measures’’ he had taken to tackle banditry and other forms of criminality in the State.
Ondo, Edo, Bauchi account for 70% of lassa fever cases – NCDC
The latest report of lassa fever from the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) showed that as of July 24, 2022, Indo, Edo and Bauchi states contributed 70 percent of the total cases of Lassa fever in the country.
Ondo, Edo and Bauchi recorded of 30 per cent, 26 per cent, and 14 per cent respectively.
It also revealed that between July 18 and 24, new confirmed cases increased to 10 from five the previous week.
Two persons lost their lives during the period under consideration. Therefore, since the beginning of the year, the total confirmed cases of Lassa fever are 857, with 164 total deaths reported.
The NCDC said, “Cumulatively from week 1 to week 29, 2022, 164 deaths have been reported with a Case Fatality Rate (CFR) of 19.1 percent, which is lower than the CFR for the same period in 2021 (23.7 percent).
“In total for 2022, 24 states have recorded at least one confirmed case across 99 Local Government Areas.
“Of all confirmed cases, 70 percent are from Ondo (30 percent), Edo (26 percent), and Bauchi (14 percent) states. The predominant age group affected is 21-30 years (Range: 0 to 90 years, median age: 30 years). The male-to-female ratio for confirmed cases is 1:0.8.
“The number of suspected cases has increased compared to that reported for the same period in 2021. One new Healthcare worker affected in Ondo State.
“National Lassa fever multi-partner, multi-sectoral Technical Working Group (TWG) continues to coordinate the response activities at all levels.”
To reduce the risk of the spread of Lassa fever, the NCDC offers the following advice: Ensure proper environmental sanitation – that is, keep your environment clean at all times, block all holes in your house to prevent rats from entering; Cover your dustbins and dispose of refuse properly. Communities should set up dumpsites very far from their homes to reduce the chances of having rodents within homes; Store foodstuff like rice, garri, beans, corn/maize, etc in containers that are well covered with tight-fitting lids.
Others are – Avoid drying foodstuffs outside on the floor, roadside where they will be exposed to contamination; Avoid bush burning which can lead to the displacement of rats from bushes to human dwellings; Eliminate rats in homes and communities by setting rat traps and other means; Practice good personal hygiene by frequent washing hands with soap under running water or use of hand sanitisers when appropriate, and visit the nearest health facility if you notice any of the signs and symptoms of Lassa fever as mentioned earlier, and avoid self-medication.
Insecurity: FG urged to seek foreign help
The Federal Government of Nigeria has been advised to seek foreign help urgently in order to tackle the problems of insecurity in the country.
According to a statement by a renowned socio-political activist and critic, Chief Adesunbo Onitiri, this became very imperative to enable Nigerians to live in peace.
He also called on the government to declare a state of emergency on insecurity in order to tackle the problem with all the seriousness it deserved.
Onitiri said the only option left was to urgently seek foreign assistance.
“We wake up daily to hear news of our youths, women, and citizens being raped, kidnapped, maimed, and killed.
“While the country is in a state of war with the bandits, our students are out of school for over five months. All our higher institutions are under lock and key. This is unacceptable to Nigerians,” Onitiri lamented.
Onitiri explained that the Kuje Prison and the Kaduna military formations attacks were sour in the mouth. “It’s like our sovereignty as a nation has been eroded.”
164 Die Of Lassa Fever As Cases Jump To 857
THE Lassa fever cases in Nigeria have jumped to 857 and 164 people have so far died from the disease in the first seven months of 2022.
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) said this in its latest Lassa fever situation report for week 29, which showed that there were 857 confirmed cases of the disease in the country.
The NCDC said that the cases were distributed across 24 states and 99 local government areas in the country.
It said that 54 healthcare workers had been infected with the disease.
“A breakdown indicated that of all confirmed cases, Ondo has 30 per cent Edo, 26 per cent and Bauchi 14 per cent states.
“In week 29, the number of new confirmed cases increased from five in week 28, 2022 to cases. These were reported from Edo and Ondo States.
“Cumulatively from week 1 to week 29, 2022, 164 deaths have been reported with a case fatality rate (CFR) of 19.1 per cent which is lower than the CFR for the same period in 2021, 23.7 per cent.
“In total for 2022, 24 States have recorded at least one confirmed case across 99 Local Government Areas. Of all confirmed cases, 70 per cent are from Ondo, 30 per cent Edo 26 per cent and Bauchi 14 per cent cases.
“The predominant age group affected is 21-30 years range: 0 to 90 years, Median Age:30 years. The male-to-female ratio for confirmed cases is 1:0.8.
“The number of suspected cases has increased compared to that reported for the same period in 2021. One new healthcare worker was affected in Ondo State,” it said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reported that Lassa fever is a viral hemorrhagic fever transmitted by rats.
It has been known since the 1950s, but the virus was not identified until 1969 when two missionary nurses died from it in the town of Lassa in Nigeria.
Even after recovery, the virus remains in body fluids, including semen. Neighbouring countries are also at risk, as the animal vector for the Lassa virus, the “multimammate rat” (Mastomys natalensis) is distributed throughout the region.
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