Dr Ali Inname, the Sokoto State Commissioner for Health, on Tuesday confirmed the deaths of 24 family members after eating some poisonous food.
The commissioner said in a statement that the incident occurred on Monday in Danzanke village of Bargaja ward of Isa Local Government Area of Sokoto State.
He explained that the incident was caused by the use of a fertiliser type of chemical, popularly called ” Gishirin Lalle in Hausa” as a seasoning in domestic family cooking, considered as common salt.
”Regrettably, the entire family who ate the meal lost their lives, except two female members, who merely tasted the food and are currently responding to treatment, with very good chances of survival.
”Attempts to save the lives of all the affected people by providing the needed medical care proved abortive,” Inname said.
The commissioner urged the public to learn from this incident and keep away such poisonous chemicals from easy reach.
He further appealed to people to always be cautious to prevent reoccurrence in their families.
He said that it was very important for the public to know that the incidence was preventable and not contagious, as it was extremely fatal, even with the best medical attention given to victims.
Inname advised people to always separate storage sites for food items from other agricultural and cosmetic items and to carefully check all ingredients and foodstuff before use.
He stressed that food stores should be secured to prevent access to flies, while cooked food and water sources should be secured.
Inname enjoined people to safeguard their surroundings to be clean and reduce flies and other vectors and wash hands regularly with soap and water.
”Wells should have covers to prevent contamination from faces of surface water after a rainfall, the water should be boiled before use, especially in rural areas.
”Report to a health facility or isolation camp in your area early when you observe any unusual symptoms or unusual condition,” Inname appealed to residents.