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Achieving zero malaria by 2030 possible – Expert

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By Oluwabukola Akanni

A consultant clinical pharmacologist, Dr Obaro Michael, says that Nigeria can attain zero-malaria target by year 2030.

Michael of the University College Hospital, Ibadan, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday in Ibadan.

He, however, said that eliminating malaria in the country would require strong political will and determined involvement of all stakeholders.

Michael said that vaccines also had the potential to accelerate malaria elimination in the country.

“Nigeria has one of the largest burdens of malaria in the world. A malaria vaccine will be the most certain way to eliminate the disease.

“Perhaps, Nigeria will be the country that will benefit the most from a malaria vaccine,” he said.

According to him, the COVID-19 pandemic has affected some of the significant gains made in reducing malaria cases in the country.

He appealed to the Federal Government to prioritise and strengthen malaria support system, saying that a disease such as malaria should not be ignored.

“COVID-19 has impacted negatively on malaria control efforts.

“The scarce resources for the control of malaria have been shared with the COVID-19 control efforts.

“Currently, the focus of the government and government agencies are on COVID-19 while gains of malaria control achieved before the pandemic are gradually being lost,” he said.

According to the 2019 World Malaria Report, Nigeria had the highest number of global malaria cases in 2018 and accounted for the highest number of deaths. (NAN)

(NAN)

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