An NGO, the Lift Above Poverty Organisation, says Nigeria accounts for 32 per cent of the global estimate of 655,000 Malaria deaths annually.
LAPO also said that 97 per cent of the Nigeria population was at risk of the disease.
The Chief Executive Officer, LAPO, Sabina Idowu-Osehobo, made the disclosure on Thursday while speaking at the 2019 World Malaria Day programme organised by the organisation at Akinola/Ifesewapo Community, Agbado Oke-Odo LCDA in Lagos.
Idowu-Osehobo, represented by Sandra Asowata, Regional Officer, LAPO Lagos 2 Region, said that LAPO was pleased to be a key stakeholder promoting efforts towards a zero-Malaria prevalence in Nigeria.
She said: “Malaria has significant impact on national economic development and household income.
“Malaria constitutes a huge epidemiologic burden in Africa and continues to cripple the economic development in the region.
“Malaria remains an important cause of morbidity and mortality in Nigeria with all year transmission and 97 per cent of the population at risk.
“Nigeria also accounts for 32 per cent of the global estimate of 655,000 malaria deaths annually. Malaria victims are mostly pregnant women with their unborn babies and children below the age of five years.”
According to her, Malaria is responsible for 60 per cent of outpatient visits to health facilities, 30 per cent of childhood deaths, 25 per cent of deaths in children under one year and 11 per cent of maternal death in Nigeria.
Idowu-Osehobo said that Malaria was a major cause of increasing household poverty and slowed the phase of national development as over N132 billion was expended annually on treatment costs, prevention and loss of man-hours.
“LAPO believes that the theme of the 2019 WMD: “Zero Malaria Starts With Me” is achievable through the collective efforts of every stakeholders, including the vulnerable, healthcare providers, government and international development bodies.
“LAPO’s activities for malaria prevention are aimed towards reducing social economic burden of the disease on individuals and members of their households.
“In 2018 alone, LAPO distributed over 100,000 printed enlightenment materials and 5,000 insecticidal treated bed nets and provided free Malaria screening services to 35,885 beneficiaries across our target communities.
“LAPO will continue to support every effort of the government of Nigeria at all levels until we are able to achieve a zero-Malaria prevalence in the country.”
On his part, the Baale of Ifesowapo/Akinola Kingdom, Chief Amos Akinola, the “Otatu 1”, thanked LAPO for extending the anti-malaria sensitisation to the community and also for distributing free insecticidal treated nets to the people of the locality.