Again, cattle rustlers steal 43 cows at Kutunku community
Malaria: FCTA to supply treatment drugs free to hospitals
Residents of Old Kutunku community in Gwagwalada Area Council of the FCT were, Thursday, last week, thrown into panic when some cattle rustlers invaded the community, shooting sporadically and stole 43 cows.
A victim, Malam Haruna Ismaila, who disclosed this to our reporter, said the cattle rustlers, who were 18 in number, came with sophisticated weapons at about 10:10 pm and shot several times into the air for nearly an hour before moving away with the cattle.
He said the rustlers, who came to the community through the bush path, tied the two security men guarding the cows. The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), last week, said drugs for the treatment of malaria disease will soon be made available, free of charge, to secondary and tertiary health facilities under the purview of the administration.
FCT Secretary of Health and Human Services, Dr. Ademola Onakomaiya, who stated this during a press conference to commemorate World Malaria Day in Abuja, said the programme was in collaboration with the Clinton Health Access Initiative and will reduce malaria cases to the barest minimum.
Onakomaiya said the FCTA, in partnership with National Malaria Elimination Programme
Ismaila said: “About 18 of them came with A-K 47 rifles and started shooting sporadically into the air. After they had tied the two security men and one other elderly man that normally takes the cows out for grazing, they moved the cows away.”
He alleged that several phone calls placed to policemen at Gwagwalada, intimating them about the incident were not responded to, until the rustlers escaped with the cows.
“They were shooting into the air while moving the cows into the bush unchallenged as several phone calls made that night to the police at Gwagwalada were not responded to,’’ he alleged.
Our reporter learned that the sporadic gunshot by the rustlers which lasted for almost an hour, of Federal Ministry of Health and other development partners, have embarked on certain malaria control strategies in the FCT which have started yielding results in the drive to eliminate the disease from the communities.
He listed the strategies to include distribution of long lasting insecticide treated nets to people, indoor residual spraying in designated areas of FCT and free medicines to pregnant women during their ante-natal visits.
The secretary said that the administration has provided Rapid Diagnostic Test Kits and Microscopy for its health facilities for the diagnosis of malaria disease.
He said health workers will be retrained in the 90 Global Fund assisted health facilities in the FCT, adding that the community based role threw the entire residents into pandemonium, as people sleeping at the corridors of their houses as a result of the scorching heat were forced to run inside their rooms.
Efforts to reach the Gwagwalada Divisional Police Officer (DPO), Mr. John Etim, over the incident were unsuccessful but a police officer at the division, who confirmed the incident, said the police responded immediately they received a distress call but that before the arrival of the police, the rustlers escaped.
It would be recalled that some cattle rustlers had also on the same day invaded Wako community in Kwali Area Council, and shot a 3-year-old boy and his elder brother while attempting to steal cows. model care giver will soon be resuscitated.
According to him, the role models would be permanent community residents, who will be trained and sponsored to diagnose and give free anti-malarial treatment to community members.
Highlights of activities to mark the World Malaria Day in the FCT included advocacy to the six area councils’ chairmen, community environmental sanitation and net hanging demonstration in Gwagwalada.
Others were issuing of nets to pregnant women and children under five years in Gwagwalada, Town Hall meeting in Gwagwalada, diagnosis and treatment for malaria and decoration of student malaria ambassadors.
From left: Director FCT Public Health Department, Dr Folashade O. Momoh; FCT Secretary of Health Human Services, Dr Ademola Onakomaiya and the Sarkin Jiwa FCT, Alhaji Idris Musa, during the World Malaria Day press conference.