By Ruth Oginyi
Some residents of Ebonyi State, have shared their testimonies on malaria scourge and the use of mosquito net since they started sleeping under the net saying that it has saved them from treating malaria every two weeks.
Ebonyi State Government, with support from USAID had in 2019 distributed about 1.7 million mosquito nets to the people of the State to avoid malaria.
Report has it that Nigeria accounts for 25 percent of malaria burden in the world. Pregnant women and children are most vulnerable to the scourge.
Some of the residents who shared their positive experiences said sleeping inside mosquito is the best way to avoid mosquito bite which results to malaria sickness.
Mr. Onyekachi Nworie, from Ezzaegu in Ishielu Local Government Area said, “I use mosquito net and since I started using it, malaria stopped attacking me, earlier before now I use to treat malaria every fortnight but now it is a thing of the past, so I advice people to use mosquito net especially now that government shared it free.”
Ogochukwu Anioke said, “I sleep inside mosquito net, I started sleeping with mosquito net since Secondary School and it has been preventing me from being infected with malaria.”
Mr. Emmanuel from Igweka-Enyim Agbaja in Izzi Local Government Area said, “I can’t stop sleeping inside the treated Mosquito net because since Government shared to us those treated net, I Emmanuel Nwofe-Nshi and my family have been using net very well and that has helped us from constantly buying Malaria Drugs and it has directly saved me money.”
“Considering the hard time presently, other people are suffering to people buy water to drink, assuming we buy water, buying Malaria Drugs for myself and my family coupled with my children school fees would have been disastrous.”
“Finally, I appreciate Government and the agency that donated the net for saving me Malaria Drug’s money. Thank you.”
Speaking to Dr. Chris Achi Permanent Sec Ministry of Health, Ebonyi State on the net usage by residents of the State, he noted that the net usage is determined by level of sensitization and awareness creation, because before now, people didn’t actually understand the importance of mosquito nets.
He noted that Some people complained that it makes the room stuffy, but it is a matter of understanding the usefulness of the net
The Permanent Secretary said, “Before we went into the distribution, we did alot of sensitization, awareness creation for people to know the importance of using the net because we know that malaria alone contributes more than 70% of the sickness attacking Nigerians and it is equally a major cause of death in our environment pregnant women and children are most valuable.”
“So, every family wants the life of pregnant women and their children to be secured, and now people understand the importance of mosquito nets so they came out to collect the net.”
Dr. Achi who underscored the contributions of development partners, commended Breakthrough Action Nigeria a Non Governmental Agency supported by USAID on their contributions.
He further warned that anybody seen using the net to prevent pest from his or her crops will be arrested.
“Now that they understand that net is safe, usage is more than 95% actually, there are few cases where the net may not be used because they will say that the weather is hot but you can use it outside to sleep.”
“Usage now is very good and we equally said that anybody using the net to protect his farm, such person will be arrested and prosecuted because government spent millions of naira to procure these nets and after procuring the net, instead of them to use it, they will be using it to protect their farms whereas some didn’t even get. Thank God we are equally monitoring the usage to ensure that people are using it.”
“The contribution of breakthrough action was great, they started with us right from the micro plan stage, up to distribution and post distribution and their contributions was so wonderful.”Follow us