September 25, 2023

Lara Adejoro

Medical experts have warned that there is a likelihood of disease outbreaks due to the gatherings and travel associated with the general elections in the country.

The warning is coming as Nigerians elect their President, Vice President, and members of the Senate and the House of Representatives across the country.

The governorship and state Assembly elections will be held on March 11, 2023.

Nigeria is currently battling multiple disease outbreaks like Lassa fever, meningitis, yellow fever, cholera, and diphtheria, among others.

The Director-General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease and Prevention, Dr. Ifedayo Adetifa, warned against the importation of Marburg virus disease during the election following the first-ever outbreak of the disease in Equatorial Guinea on February 13.

Adetifa, in a statement on Friday, said that based on available data, the overall risk of importation of the Marburg virus and the impact on the health of Nigerians had been assessed as moderate.

He said the extent of the outbreak in Equatorial Guinea had not yet been ascertained, but “the likelihood of importation to Nigeria is high due to the direct flight between Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea.”

Also, a Consultant Infectious Diseases expert at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Idi-Araba, Lagos, Dr. Iorhen Akase, said overcrowding during the forthcoming elections might lead to a diphtheria epidemic.

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