Cholera epidemic rages on in Angola

More than 1,700 people have died in a cholera epidemic in Angola and more than 45,000 have been infected, the World Health Organisation has said.

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    The organisation released a statement on Wednesday giving its latest figures for the outbreak, which was detected on February 13.

    "Angola has reported a total of 45,133 cumulative cases and 1,727 deaths in 14 out of the 18 provinces," the statement said.

    It said 204 new cases and 10 deaths had been reported on Monday and Tuesday. The northeastern Luanda Norte province had recorded 77 new cases, followed by Luanda at 50 and the southwestern Namibe region at 48.

    The highest toll since February was recorded in the eastern coastal province of Benguela with 502 deaths, followed by 291 fatalities in Luanda and 198 in Malanje.

    Cholera is a water-borne disease that is deadly but easy to treat. The current epidemic, one of Africa's worst, broke out in Luanda's northern slum of Boa Vista and rapidly spread throughout the capital and beyond.

    Angola is rich in oil but a 27-year war that ended in 2002 left any infrastructure in ruins so sanitation is poor and drinking water scarce.



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