The United States of America Monday denied having any connection with the recent outbreak of monkeypox in Nigeria.
The American embassy stated that the U.S. government has been supporting Nigeria health authorities with technical assistance and funding to tackle disease outbreaks such as COIVD-19 and monkeypox, among others.
Information Specialist at the Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Consulate General, Temitayo Famutimi, in a statement said it was in reaction to claims that the U.S. government was using some laboratories under its control to spread monkeypox disease in Nigeria.
The embassy said the sponsors of such claims have called on the World Health Organisation (WHO) to investigate the laboratories.
“Rather than engage in the spread of diseases, the U.S. government has been helpful to the Nigerian health sector in the areas of capacity building, as well as provision of equipment, commodities/consumables, and funding to critical public health programme, hospitals, and laboratories,” the statement reads in part.
Nigeria recently recorded its first death from monkeypox disease since the beginning of year 2022.
The Executive Director of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency, Dr. Faisal Shuaib, said Monday that the agency is in touch with the WHO and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and if there is any development, it would be communicated to Nigerians.
In a chat with journalists at the official flag –off of COVID- 19
vaccinations in community pharmacies at Gwarinpa, Abuja, Dr. Shuaib said if there is any information on vaccination against Monkey pox, it would be communicated to the public.
The NCDC confirmed the death of one and added that 21 cases of the disease were reported from nine states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) in the last five months.
The states concerned include Adamawa – 5, Lagos – 4, Bayelsa – 2, Delta – 2, Cross River – 2, FCT – 2, Kano – 2, Imo – 1, and Rivers – 1.