By Christiana Ekpa and Ikechukwu Okaforadi
Senate yesterday urged the Federal Ministry of Health to as a matter of urgency procure sufficient quantity of anti-snakes venom and supply to the treatment centres in snakes belt states of Borno, Gombe, Taraba, Adamawa and Plateau.
The Upper Chamber equally mandate the Senate Committee on Health to investigate the failure of Ministry of Health to supply anti-snake venom to the treatment centers and other Health centers; and It also urged the Federal Ministry of Health to initiate step towards the establishment of local production of the anti-snake venom.
The resolution of the Senate followed consideration of a motion on the “alarming rates of deaths of victims of snake bites due to scarcity of anti snake venom” sponsored by Senator Joshua Lidani representing Gombe North at the Red Chambers.
The lawmaker raised alarm that the federal ministry of health which used to supply anti venom to the snakes bite treatment centres in the North stopped doing so since last year.
Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekwerenmadu who presided over Thursday’s plenary in his concluding remarks on the motion stated that government ought to invest in protection of lives and properties of citizens and hence must spend a lot of money towards eradicating poisonous snakes from the snake belt states.
Emmanuel Bwacha (PDP-Taraba) said “periodically lives are been lost and in most cases these lives are lost without been reported yet they are citizens of Nigeria.
The government of ex President Olusegun Obasanjo had approved the establishment of the factory for production of anti snake venom in Gombe state but nothing has been done in furtherance of that approval as all anti snake venom are imported into the country.