Bird Flu Disease reappears in Nigeria, spreads to 26 states and FCT

The disease has also spread to 26 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and more than 3.5 million birds have been affected.

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 Audu Ogbeh play

Minister for Agriculture, Audu Ogbeh

(TheHerald)
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A new strain of the Avian Influenza virus, popularly known as bird flu, has entered Nigeria, the Federal Government has said.

The disease has also spread to 26 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and more than 3.5 million birds have been affected.

This was disclosed by Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh on Tuesday, January 10, at a stakeholders meeting in Abuja, Punch reports.

“Recently, a new strain of the bird flu virus (H5N8) was reported in Kano. The new strain is believed to be very pathogenic and more devastating to poultry species and, therefore, it may further add to the burden of the H5N1 strain that is currently circulating in the country,” Ogbeh said.

“The disease is trans-boundary in nature and also trade-limiting; some of our neighbouring countries have proposed to ban poultry and poultry products from Nigeria. This may undesirably lead to an egg glut in the country.

“The Federal Government is determined to continue to work with state governments, PAN and other stakeholders in the poultry industry to come up with sustainable measures to prevent, control and eradicate this disease from our country within the shortest time possible. This is the major reason for our meeting here today,” he added.

Ogbeh urged the commissioners of agriculture in the affected states to take the necessary steps to provide safe food for Nigerians.

He also said that the Federal Government had provided disease containment materials, reviewed the national emergency preparedness plan on Avian Influenza, enhanced the laboratory diagnostics capacity at the National Veterinary Research Institute in Plateau State, and created awareness and advocacy on the disease.