The Representative of the World Health Organisation, in Nigeria, Tereza Kasaeva, has said Nigeria ranks first in Africa among countries with the highest cases of tuberculosis infection.
She also said the country ranked among the top 10 countries globally.
Kasaeva stated this on Wednesday when she led a delegation of the United Nations Programming Mission on a visit to the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, at the National Assembly, Abuja.
She said the infectious disease was responsible for over 1.5 million deaths annually.
Kasaeva, according to a statement by the Media Assistant to the Senate President, Ezrel Tabiowo, called on the Federal Government to make additional investments in primary health care services through urgent interventions by the National Assembly.
She said, “Additional investments in tuberculosis and non-communicable diseases will be needed from the domestic source.
“We, from our side as WHO, will use all the additional advocacy to attracting these resources and provide all the needed technical support for the country.
“It is an old disease but still number one infectious killer disease in the world with 1. 5 million deaths annually.
“Here in Nigeria, you are number one in the Afro-region, and among top 10 countries globally.”
The President of the Senate appealed to the United Nations and the World Health Organisation to lend their support to the Nigerian government towards ensuring the eradication of tuberculosis in the country.
Lawan said the statistics in which Nigeria was ranked number one in Africa in terms of tuberculosis infection rate was not good enough.
He said, “It is not a good commentary that we are in that kind of leading position from behind.
“We have to do a lot of work, and I want to take this opportunity to request that you help us attend to these issues while we continue to keep the health sector and try to see how much more of investment we can make as a country.”