By Asmau Ahmad
The Sokoto State Government has commenced the vaccination of two million people in the state against the type ‘C’ strain of meningitis.
The state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Balarabe Kakale Shuni, made the disclosure to newsmen in Sokoto on Wednesday when he gave update on the meningitis epidemic in the state.
He said: “The state government has received the first installment of 20,000, doses of the vaccines from the Federal Government. The target population across the state are those aged between one and 30 years, the exercise was kick-started in Gada Local Government.
“This was done because the local government has the highest population of 300,000 in the state. The first case of meningitis was also recorded in the area about three months ago while it is also a front line local government, bordering Niger republic.
“Twelve teams are conducting the first phase of the exercise in the area with nine officials each.”
Dr. Kakale further stated that the remaining 22 governments would be covered in the subsequent phases of the exercise.
“The state has since exited the first phase of the high alert, declared on March 20 on the health sector due to the epidemic. We are now in the second phase which entails the mass immunisation of the people of the state against the deadly strain of the disease.”
Newsmen report that the commissioner had, penultimate week, put the meningitis related death toll at 41. However, other deaths were confirmed in Shagari and Gudu local governments of the state.
The Chairman of Shagari Local Government Area, Alhaji Jabbi Shagari, on Tuesday confirmed 10 deaths, while his Gudu Local Government counterpart, Alhaji Ahmed Maidamma on Wednesday, confirmed two deaths.