Ogun Confirms Outbreak Of Bird Flu

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The Ogun State government yesterday confirmed the outbreak of Avian Influenza, also known as bird flu.

The state commissioner for Agriculture, Mrs Ronke Sokefun while addressing newsmen said samples from Sango, Sagamu and Ifo live birds market tested positive to the highly pathogenic bird flu.

According to her, samples of birds taken from another poultry farm on Obalende-Ikangba Road in Odogbolu Local Government area of the state had tested positive to the H5N1 virus.

Reports from the Ministry of Agriculture suggest that over 140,000 birds may have been exposed to the deadly disease. Over 21 farms spread across seven Nigerian states, including its commercial hub, Lagos have either recorded cases or been exposed to the disease, the report added.

According to the commissioner, discovery was made after a state-wide surveillance and live bird market decontamination exercise initiated along the border towns of Sango, Ifo, Akute, Sagamu, and Mowe-Ibafo axis, considering their nearness to Lagos.

“Other markets in Abeokuta, Ijebu Ode, Ilaro and Ayetoro were not left out.”

She said the samples were sent to the National Veterinary Research Institute, Vom, near Jos in Plateau State.

Meanwhile, the state chairman, Poultry Association of Nigeria, Dr. Olalekan Odunsi, however, said there was no cause for alarm.

Odunsi said the association in conjunction with other neighbouring states had held stakeholders meeting on ways of containing the virus.

“We have sent SMS to our members on advocacy and the need for them to take preventive measures on their farms. There is no need to panic. The areas affected are under surveillance.”

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