Emergency Assistance to combat the Meningitis Epidemic in Nigeria

March 21, 2003

  1. On March 20 (Thu), the Government of Japan decided to provide emergency assistance in kind (preventive vaccine, syringes and trash boxes for discarded syringes) equivalent to about 6.8 million yen, to the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, which is suffering from a growing meningitis epidemic.

  2. Since September last year when the outbreak of meningitis was confirmed in Nigeria, the disease has been spreading mainly in the northern part of the country including the state of Jigawa. Up to now, 851 cases including 193 fatalities have been confirmed.

  3. The Government of Nigeria, seriously concerning about this epidemic, has formulated a short-term action program in addition to the conventional countermeasures against infectious diseases and is now providing medical treatment and inoculation against the disease. However, as there is not enough vaccine or stock of antibiotics in the country, the Nigerian government needs further assistance from the international society, and the assistance has been requested to the Government of Japan.

  4. The Government of Japan has decided to extend this emergency aid as humanitarian assistance to the patients and as a health and medical support to prevent the further spread of this epidemic, taking into account the friendly relations between Japan and Nigeria.

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