Concerns grow after rabies kills five people in Umlazi
Durban – AT LEAST five people in uMlazi have died from rabies in the past three months.
This was revealed on Monday by Agriculture and Rural Development MEC Bongiwe Sithole-Moloi, who was leading a rabies vaccination drive at Zinto Cele Park in uMlazi D section on World Rabies Day.
Sithole-Moloi said one of the five cases was still a probable case and yet to be confirmed.
“We’re worried because we have five people. We were happy last year when we reduced the number in 2018. Eight people died from rabies and we tried to limit the number and it went down to four in 2019. Now it’s five,” said Sithole-Moloi.
She also said they would be rolling out the campaign in all districts but were focused on uMlazi because a high number of animals had rabies.
The MEC said the campaign would continue, but at intervals.
Sithole-Moloi also revealed that some of their vehicles had been stolen when officials went to assist the community.
Yesterday the department pleaded with a representative from the mayor’s office to ask metro police to assist them so they could do their work successfully.
According to the National Institute for Communicable Diseases, the latest death from rabies was confirmed as a boy, 9, from Umbumbulu, south of Durban, after he fell ill in August. There was also a probable rabies case from uMlazi.
The first laboratory-confirmed rabies case in South Africa was in July and the first case in KwaZulu-Natal was diagnosed in August. The National Institute For Communicable Diseases said that over the past two decades, 41.9% of human rabies cases in South Africa were reported from KZN.