Delta State government and World Health Organization (WHO) are investigating the ailments which caused the mysterious death of no fewer than 15 persons in Ute Okpu and Idumesa Communities in Ika North East local government area of the State.
The State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Mordi Ononye who led the delegation of public health officials and representatives of WHO to the disease prone Area, confirmed that the mysterious disease had, within the past two weeks, claimed the lives of about 15 persons who were between the ages of 18 to 25 years, while scores of others affected are in danger lists at various hospitals in the Area.
According to the Commissioner, “Delta State Government has received information on seemingly mysterious deaths in Ute Okpu and Idumesa communities of Ika North East Local Government Area of the State which prompted the Governor, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, to order the State Ministry of Health to immediately investigate these deaths, identify the cause/causes and effect containment measures”.
Dr. Ononye, while informing HRM, the Obi of Ute Okpu, of the Governor’s directive to upgrade the Comprehensive Health Center in Ute -Okpu to a full fledged Hospital, called on members of the community and residents of the State to observe good hygiene as the dry season approaches by covering their foods, cutting grasses around their surroundings, eliminate rats in their houses as well as to observe the COVID-19 safety guide lines, especially hand washing with soap and running water.
The State Epidemiologist, Dr. Richard Ikwuogu, alluded to the fact that his office sent Health personnel to the community immediately the information reached him, to commence investigation with a view to unravel cause of their deaths.
He added that his team had visited the families of the affected persons in the community and those at the hospital in Umunede to collect their samples for necessary action.
Dr. Ikwogu said that though a suspicion of viral hemorrhagic fever, or substance abuse, the outcome of the test collected will give clear picture of the type of disease and the next line of action to take.
HRM Obi Solomon Chukwuka I, Obi of Ute Okpu while welcoming the Health Commissioner and his team to his palace, thanked Governor Ifeanyi Okowa for giving the directive for the health center in his domain to be upgraded.
He said that government’s intervention has brought hope and assurance them that the disease will be cured, soonest.