Bukkuyum (Zamfara) – The Emir of Bukkuyum in Zamfara, Alhaji Muhammadu Usman, has said that over 300 children died as a result of lead poisoning at Yar-Galma village of Bukkuyum Local Government Area of the state.
The emir made the disclosure on Friday at Yar-Galma during the inauguration of a solar-powered borehole, drilled by the Sir Ahmadu Bello Memorial Foundation (SABMF).
Usman commended the foundation for initiating the project. The traditional, who ruler lamented that lead poisoning had adversely affected several communities in the area appealed to government and other NGOs to emulate the foundation.
The Chairman of the foundation, retired Justice Mamman Nasir, said the project was provided through the foundation’s Health Intervention Programme. Nasir further said it was designed to provide safe and potable water free from lead poison and other dissolved metallic contaminants in the community.
Malam Umar Shuaibu, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN),after the ceremony, that he lost his five year-old daughter to lead poison two years ago. Shuaibu said the project would go a long way in saving many lives in the community.
Lead is a naturally occurring element found in small amounts in the earth’s crust and has some beneficial uses but can also be toxic to humans and animals, thus causing health effects. Lead can be found in all parts of environment such as through the air, soil,water and homes while exposure to lead comes from human activities such as the use of fossil fuels, industrial facilities, lead-based paint in homes among others.