By Temitope in Akure
Twelve persons have been confirmed dead as a result of a strange disease that broke out at Ode-Irele, the headquarters of Irele Local Government Area of Ondo State on Wednesday.
The State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Dayo Adeyanju, who confirmed the casualty figure to journalists in Akure, the state capital, said four other persons were being given isolated treatment at the General Hospital in the town.
He said unconfirmed reports yesterday morning said two out of the four patients undergoing treatment in isolated clinic had died.
Adeyanju, who said the presentation from the investigations carried out on the victims did not reveal symptoms of the dreaded Ebola disease, said the state government had moved into the area to curtail the spread of the strange disease.
He said preliminary report showed that the dead persons complained of headache and later lost their sight before they finally gave up.
While stating that it was not a case of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD), Adeyanju said there were no cases of diarrhoea, vomiting and haemorrhage that are usual symptoms of the dreaded EVD.
The commissioner, who gave the assurance that government would do everything possible to control the strange ailment, said the World Health Organisation (WHO) and other partners were already involved in the matter.
He said samples taken from the victims had been sent to Lagos for proper investigation.
Adeyanju said because the source of the disease had not been known, government had been engaging in advocacy to ensure that new cases are reported, adding that concealment could be devastating.
He advised relations of the victims from burying the corpses of the affected people at home, saying that they should bury the dead ones at cemetery and be very careful during burials.
The commissioner said the state already have the cremation law, adding that government would have recovered the dead bodies from families if the state crematorium had been completed.
Adeyanju said the State Disease Surveillance Team and volunteers that were engaged during the ebola cases had been deployed to the area to control the ailment.
He also disclosed that the Personnel Protective Equipment purchased by the government during ebola cases had been deployed to the area with the handlers.
He warned the people against sensationalising issues as this to avoid creating tension among the people particularly on the social media.
He urged the people to rely on the information from the official sources to avoid creating panic among the people.
Meanwhile, another source disclosed to WESTERN POST that some of the dead ones allegedly sold a deity called “MALOKUN” to some white men, which made the deity to fight back and to seek revenge from those involved in the act.