The WHO said in Abuja on Monday that Nigeria had more than 100,000 suspected cases of cholera in 2021, the highest number in recent years.
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control reported earlier this year that the country had 111,062 cases of cholera in 2021, with 3,604 fatalities, surpassing the number of cases and deaths recorded in 2020.
Dr Walter Mulombo, WHO Country Representative in Nigeria, confirmed the amount at a training session on oral cholera vaccine demand and campaign planning organised by the Global Task Force on Cholera Control (GTFCC).
The GTFCC is a WHO-affiliated organisation.
Mulombo commended the GTFCC and its Country Support Platform (CSP) role in the global cholera control strategy, particularly in endemic nations.
He stated that the organisation has demonstrated its effectiveness in developing National Control Plans, which included immunisation and Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) programmes.
“We are cognizant of the response’s assistance from many partners and funders via the WHO.”
“This includes reactive vaccination, with over 1.7 million people in Bauchi, Jigawa, Yobe, and Zamfara states receiving two doses of Oral Cholera Vaccination (OCV).”
“We anticipate that Nigeria’s newly granted GTFCC proposal would greatly reduce the danger of and increase of cholera cases during this rainy season.”
“The application includes about nine million doses of OCV to undertake two programmes in 14 local government districts throughout nine states and the Federal Capital Territory,” Mulombo explained.
He emphasised the importance of expediting the supply and distribution of vaccinations in order to ensure early inoculation.
According to the WHO delegate, Nigeria has shown the ability to deliver immunizations in difficult contexts such as insecurity, as shown in two local government districts in Zamfara.
He also mentioned that the country had addressed and enhanced immunisation data quality by utilising real-time reporting by campaign personnel using handheld mobile phones.