It is understandable if countries ban the importation and use of certain products that they believe are either

However, it beats imagination to learn that a state in no other country than Nigeria has banned the drinking of Gari.

This move follows the World Health Organisation’s disclosure that ‘the disease is transmitted to humans via food and objects contaminated with rodent urine or faeces’, and also the recent death of a doctor in Edo state who reportedly contracted the Lassa fever from an infected child.

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Announcing the ban, state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Joe Akabuike said “The garri you see spread along the highway while you’re travelling is very risky to consume, especially when you drink it. It is better and surer consuming the ones you prepared yourself. We are by this enlightenment prohibiting the drinking of garri in the state.

“Like any other form of disease, good hygiene practices and taking precautions over all forms of symptoms among family members and friends will go a long way to curb the spread of diseases.

“Hand washing remains an effective way of preventing diseases. Families as well as corporate organisations should re-adopt the use of tip taps and hand sanitisers placed in public places.”

It is not clear how long the ban will be in force for, but Gari is said to be safe for consumption is it is well cooked.