Government Concerned about Jiggers Infestation in schools
During an event to celebrate the International Jiggers Day held in Khwisero Constituency, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Ahadi Kenya Stanley Kamau issued a warning to school head teachers against sending learners home because of being infested with jiggers.
The Ahadi CEO reiterated that the infestation of jiggers is a normal condition which needs to be dealt with instead of being ignored. Besides, he said that affected learners especially those who attend school need assistance and support. In his view, schools should establish hygiene clubs to raise awareness about the issue of jiggers.
Kamau said that the prevalence of jiggers in the country has risen to 15% because of prolonged drought. He revealed that the Western region has the highest infestation followed by the Coastal, Central and Nyanza Regions.
Kamau said that the high rates of infestation in Busia County are because of high levels of poverty which lead to poor sanitation. He also said that poverty needs to be fought and eliminated from society.
On his part, Kakamega County Education Director Dickson Ogonya said that jigger infestation has negatively affected learning in the county with many learners dropping out of school. He warned school heads against sending learners home because of being infested with jiggers, saying that such actions are illegal.
Kakamega County Executive Committee Member for Health Dr Bernard Wesonga identified Khwisero, Mumias East, Mumias West, Butere and Matungu as the most constituencies affected by jigger infestations.
Susan Mutua the Head of Public Health in the Ministry of Health said that the national government is giving technical support and policy formulation in a bid to eliminate the problem of jigger infestation, especially in schools and rural areas.