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Minister Of Agriculture Confirms Bird Flu Outbreak In 11 States

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The Federal minister of agriculture and rural development, Akinwumi Adesina, on Wednesday, January 28, 2015 confirmed the outbreak of bird flu in 11 states of the federation.

The minister made this known in Abuja during an emergency meeting on Avian Influenza with state commissioners for agriculture.

Adesina said the deadly virus which had arrived Lagos and Kano last week has now spread to five other states across the country, Ogun, Delta, Rivers, Edo and Plateau.

He announced that the federal government had approved N145 million to compensate the 39 farmers affected within 72 hours.

According to the minister, those farmers affected would get N1.4 million each.

“We want all those who are exposed to report. The Federal Government just like we dealt with Ebola are on top of the situation,” he said.

“We are not in a state of an epidemic and will collaborate with states and our development partners to ensure that there is no room for panic,’’ Adesina said. According to him, as at January 21, a total of 139, 505 birds had been exposed with 22, 173 mortal-ity recorded and as at Jan. 27, 232,385 were exposed and 51, 444 mortality recorded.

However, the minister urged farmers not to panic over the spread of the avian influenza virus as  the ministry was working closely with state governments, Poultry Association of Nigeria, Nigerian Veterinary Medical Association and the Animal Science Association of Nigeria to contain the spread of the virus.

Meanwhile, all farms are advised to get quarantined to avoid more spread of the flu.

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