The federal government has confirmed the first case of anthrax in Nigeria. The disease is a spore-forming bacterium, which mostly affects livestock like cattle, sheep, and goats.
In a statement signed by the chief veterinary officer of Nigeria, Dr. Columba T. Vakuru, and released on Monday, the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development revealed that animals showing signs of a possible case of anthrax on a farm in Suleja, Niger State, were reported to the Office of the Chief Veterinary Officer of Nigeria on July 14, 2023.
“The case was in a multi-specie animal farm comprising of cattle, sheep and goats located at Gajiri, along Abuja-Kaduna express way, Suleja LGA, Niger State, where some of the animals had symptoms including oozing of blood from their body openings – anus, nose, eyes and ears.
“A Rapid Response team comprising of federal and states One Health Professional Team visited the farm to conduct preliminary investigations and collected samples from the sick animals. Subsequent laboratory tests by the National Veterinary Research Institute laboratory confirmed the diagnosis, marking the first recorded case of anthrax in Nigeria in recent years,” the statement reads in part,” the statement advised.
It appealed to Nigerians to immediately report cases of animals bleeding from body openings to veterinary authorities, or agriculture extension workers.