Following the confirmation of the incidences of monkeypox virus reported in Nigeria, the government has called for the immediate suspension of sales and consumption of bushmeat.
According to Nigeria’s news agency, at least twenty-one cases of the virus have been reported with one mortality already registered.
The Ministry of Agriculture, through the Department of Veterinary and Pest Control Services in collaboration with the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control said the disease must be contained by cutting its spread.
A statement by the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mohammed Abubakar, he urged Nigerians to avoid bushmeat as they are carriers of the virus.
He also advised people to avoid contact with persons infected.
“Hunters and dealers of “bushmeat” must desist from the practice forthwith to prevent any possibility of “SPILLOVER” of the pathogen in Nigeria,” he said.
“Transport of wild animals and their products within and across the borders should be suspended/restricted.
“All operators of Zoos, Parks, Conservation and Recreational centers keeping non-human primates in their domains must ensure strict compliance with their biosecurity protocols aimed at preventing their contacts with humans.
“All Veterinary Clinics, Veterinary Teaching Hospitals, and other Veterinary Health Institutions across the country must ensure vigilance so as to be able to pick possible signs and symptoms of Monkey Pox in non-human primate (NHP) patients.
“We must also ensure regular handwashing using strong disinfectant anytime we handle NHP and rodents in our various locations.
“We must also discourage the act of consumption, trade and keeping of NHP as well as rodents as pets in our homes.”
Monkeypox virus is a self-limiting disease usually known to spread easily with contact. It is known to lead to low mortality except in cases of comorbidities.
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