Bushmeat sale in Nigeria has been banned in an attempt to stop monkeypox spread in the country. This month, six individuals have been discovered throughout the nation, bringing the year’s total to 21 infections.
According to experts, the virus can possibly be transmitted through the consumption of a diseased animal’s meat. However, this isn’t the typical transmission pathway. Monkeypox is a common viral illness in Nigeria. It’s most frequent in remote regions close to humid rainforests.
Nigeria continues to battle sporadic cases since 2017 when the outbreak was first announced. According to WHO, the virus was predominantly in the nation’s southern region. However, from 2020 upwards, it has spread to northern, eastern, and central areas.
Of the twenty-one verified infections thus far this year, one individual has died as a result of underlying problems. However, according to the health officials, “there are no novel or uncommon virus transfers, nor have alterations in the medical presentation been observed.”
Scientists are perplexed by the recent outbreak of monkeypox in Europe among people that have never visited any monkeypox endemic African nation. However, there are indications that the virus probably moved unnoticed for some time from one person to another.
Monkeypox is spread through direct contact with a verified case. The virus gains access to the body via a wound, the respiratory system, or the mouth, eyes, or nose. Infected persons in the United Kingdom are told to stay away from sexual intercourse while the symptoms last.
Rodents, such as squirrels and rats, may be carriers of the virus. Infection might occur if one of the infected animal reservoirs bites someone or the person comes into contact with a diseased animal.
Animals in the wild, such as porcupines, rats, fruit bats, antelopes, snakes, and chimpanzees that are hunted for consumption is referred to as bushmeat. In some parts of the country, it is a critical food source but there are other parts of the country where it has evolved into a cuisine.
Nigeria has several bushmeat markets and it is vague how the prohibition will be enforced. The agricultural ministry also instructed veterinarians and other authorities to raise monitoring for any monkeypox infections in animals.
The operators of conservation sites, parks, zoos, and recreational facilities were retold to avoid any animal and visitors’ direct contact.