A survey, conducted by the Federal Ministry of Health and facilitated by an independent group of health experts, “Sightsavers,” has shown that about two and a half million persons in Zamfara are vulnerable to contracting one or more Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs).

The state’s Programme Officer of Sightsavers, Alhaji Ahmed Ibrahim, who disclosed this in his office, yesterday, said facts indicated that the whole 14 local councils of the state were endemic for lymphatic filariasis and six local councils endemic for river blindness.

He said that the whole 14 local councils are prone to bilharziasis, while seven are endemic with trachoma.

Ahmed, however, explained that the prevalence of these diseases is fast declining due to the support from the Sightsavers to the extent that trachoma is almost controlled, while onchocerciasis is no longer posing a health threat in the state.

He revealed that Zamfara is one of the choice states benefitting from the Sightsavers’ intervention for the control and prevention of NTDs since 1994 through African Programme on Onchocerciasis (APOC) control and Department for International Development (DFID) United.

He also said the state had for years ago been benefitting from the organisation in the control and prevention of NTDs, which include river blindness, trachoma, lymphatic filariasis, bilharziasis, and soil-transmitted helminthiasis.