Ogun State Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, has advised government at all levels to pay great attention to the prevalence of malaria in the country as recent research reveals 300,000 people die of the disease annually.
According to him, if government fails to pay great attention to it, a state of emergency should be declared on the health sector.
In his remarks at the flag off of campaign on insecticides, held in Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta, the governor, who was represented by the Deputy Governor, Mrs. Yetunde Onanuga, while decorating the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Aremu Gbadebo as the ‘Net Ambassador,’ said African region had a burden of 90 per cent of preventable disease.
He noted that Nigeria, the most populous country in Africa, accounts for about 24 per cent of the disease and 24 per cent of malaria death globally, adding malaria was responsible for approximately 60 per cent out-patients visits and 30 per cent of hospital admissions in the country.
The governor said about 110 million cases were clinically diagnosed annually, noting that malaria, which is transmitted by the bite of mosquito, happened to be the cause of death for about 300, 000 persons yearly in Nigeria, and is frequent among children and pregnant women living, especially, in rural and rustic communities.
In the same vein, the Minister of Health, Dr. Isaac Adewole, represented by Director General, Nigeria Institute of Medical Research, Prof, Babatunde Salako, said malaria persists in the country because only 39 per cent of household has insecticidal net.
Adewole said only 19 per cent of household has at least one net for every two persons, noting that the flag off of the distribution of 3.3 million insecticidal nets in the state would help in the elimination of malaria in the country.
The Vice President and Chief Information Officer, Catholic Relief Services, Mr. Karl Lowe, said malaria remained a major public health problem.
He noted that with support the scourge of malaria has, however, reduced maximally.