LAGOS – Prof. Akintunde Sowunmi, a Pharmacologist and Therapeutist at the University of Ibadan, said on Thursday that adequate and sustained education on malaria had the capacity to eliminate the disease from Nigeria.
Sowunmi, who said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), decried the prevalence of malaria in the country.
He said that the prevention strategies adopted so far were satisfactory and should be retained, improved and implemented holistically to yield far-reaching results.
“Malaria is a killer disease; malaria is still in Nigeria; it is still one of the leading causes of fever and anaemia in Nigeria.
“We need to have more knowledge about malaria, educate the people that we have to use the nets, that we have to use Anti-malaria combination therapy (ACTs) correctly and we have to treat acute infection complaints within 24 hours.
“That we have to take steps to prevent malaria using the available resources and to let our people know that it is not an obstacle that we cannot surmount.
“And we need to try and surmount it and to be able to contribute more meaningfully to malaria control.“
Sowunmi advised against the use of herbs and other local medicines for the treatment of malaria, saying that such treatments had not been scientifically proved to be safe.
“The local medicines that we have, we have not isolated the active extracts, we need to purify them, we need to standardise them, we need to adopt the dosage regiment.
“So, we are still a long way from using the locally available natural products to prevent malaria.
“But, I think that we need to re-educate them that those are not standardised forms of malaria control.”