The United Nations said on Thursday said at least 1.4 million people uprooted by Boko Haram’s insurgency in northeast Nigeria are living in cholera , prey to an outbreak of the deadly disease which is sweeping through camps for the displaced.
An estimated 28 people have died from cholera in the conflict-hit region, while about 837 are suspected to have been infected with the disease, including at least 145 children under the age of five, said the U.N. children’s agency (UNICEF).
The outbreak was first identified last week in the Muna Garage camp in Maiduguri, the capital of Borno state, which is the heart of jihadist group Boko Haram’s brutal eight-year campaign to carve out an Islamic caliphate in northeast Nigeria.
About 1.8 million people have abandoned their homes because of violence or food shortages, U.N. agencies say, and many live in camps for the displaced throughout northeast Nigeria.
The disease, which spreads through contaminated food and drinking water, causes diarrhea, nausea and vomiting. It can kill within hours if left untreated, but most patients recover if treated promptly with oral rehydration salts.