The National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) has debunked the report of an outbreak of a new polio variant in some states of the federation, describing it as a gross misrepresentation of the facts.
Executive director of NPHCDA, Dr Faisal Shuaib, in a statement late Thursday, said: “The attention of NPHCDA has been drawn to reports in some sections of the media claiming that there is an outbreak of a new polio variant in some states.
“This is a gross misrepresentation of the facts. For the avoidance of doubt, no case of WPV has been reported anywhere in the country since the last case in 2016.
“What is being misconstrued for an outbreak of WPV is the detection, through our robust disease surveillance system of 22 cases of Acute Flaccid Paralysis, spread across seven (7) States (Borno, Jigawa, Kano, Kebbi, Sokoto, Yobe and Zamfara).
“Nigeria and the African region were certified WPV-free on the 25thAugust 2020 and therefore, the polio-free status of the country is not in any way under threat.”
The NPHCDA boss further explained that the non-wild polio viruses originated as a result of normal changes in the reproduction of viruses.
He noted that the viruses are not as virulent as WPV and are also being reported in other countries.
Shuaib added that Nigeria has already acquired new tools and resources to ensure these viruses are contained.