Lassa Fever: Senator Urges Health Ministry To Breed Cats

A Nigerian senator has called on the ministry of healthy to breed more cats that would help in the elimination of rats which causes lassa fever.

Shehu Sani

Senator Shehu Sani

Speaking during a prayer session for those that had died due to Lassa fever at the senate plenary on Tuesday, January 12, Shehu Sani, senator representing Kaduna central on a lighter note said the health ministry needs to be encouraged to breed more cats.

The senate in a motion prayer at its plenary had also commended the ministry of health for its effort in curbing the recent outbreak of lassa fever.

The motion was sponsored by Theodore Orji, Jonah Jang, Andy Uba, Suleiman Nazif and Matthew Urhoghide.

On the motion, the senate agreed that its committee on health should send an invitation to the minister of health, Isaac Adewole and other agencies on briefs on the prevention of the outbreak.

Concerned about the sudden outbreak, the senate said it is aware that the disease frequently infects people in West Africa and results in 300,000 to 500,000 cases annually which also results to about 5,000 deaths.

Senators also said it is worrisome that responsible health agencies emphasise awareness only after the outbreaks appear, the senate urged all relevant agencies to initiate long term strategies to avoid future outbreaks.

Nigeria’s ministry of health has confirmed 35 deaths out of 76 victims which has so far spread to 10 states and traced to lassa fever usually caused by rodents –rats.

Also recently, the Benue state government has banned the eating, selling of rat meat, one of its staple foods till the eradication of lassa fever.