Cholera outbreak kills dozens in Niger

Niger witnesses spike in cholera with 38 dying in the month of September alone, taking this year's toll to 51.

    Niger has registered more than 1,300 cholera cases since the beginning of the year [AFP]
    Niger has registered more than 1,300 cholera cases since the beginning of the year [AFP]

    Niger has seen more than 1,300 cases of cholera since the beginning of the year, with 51 people dying of the disease, the United Nations has said.

    In September alone there were 38 reported deaths from cholera, said the UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in the capital Niamey on its website on Monday.

    The spike in the number of cholera deaths was due in part of heavy flooding which has inundated Niger since June.

    Steps are being taken "to contain the illness" and "prevent it from appearing in new places," said OCHA, noting that cholera has broken out in four of Niger's eight regions.

    Of special concern is the southeast region of Diffa where since 2013 some 105,000 people have taken refuge fleeing from the deadly attacks in Nigeria by the armed group Boko Haram and the crackdown by the Nigerian army.

    Many refugees have settled on the islands of Lake Chad "where access to drinking water is limited and the conditions of hygiene and sanitation are precarious," the UN office said.

    Cholera is transmitted by ingesting food or drink contaminated with human waste. It causes diarrhoea, dehydration and death if let untreated. 

    SOURCE: AFP


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    'We scoured for days without sleeping, just clothes on our backs'

    'We scoured for days without sleeping, just clothes on our backs'

    The Philippines’ Typhoon Haiyan was the strongest storm ever to make landfall. Five years on, we revisit this story.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    Daughters of al-Shabab

    Daughters of al-Shabab

    What draws Kenyan women to join al-Shabab and what challenges are they facing when they return to their communities?