A cholera outbreak in southern Niger has killed 12 people and infected 201 others across three regions, with heavy rains helping to further spread the disease, the country’s health minister said on Monday.
Niger’s southern neighbour Nigeria is also dealing with a cholera outbreak, which has killed at least 653 people since March across 22 of its 36 states.
Health authorities in Niger believe the outbreaks are connected.
“Most of the cases are related to an epidemic that has been raging for several months in neighbouring cross-border regions where there is significant mixing of cross-border populations,” health minister Idi Illiassou Mainassara said in a statement.
The previous cholera outbreak in Niger occurred in the same regions in 2018, Mainassara said.
Niger’s border with Nigeria is a hot spot for cholera outbreaks, where populations often move freely between both countries with minimal restrictions, Mainassara said.