BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: World: Africa
Front Page 
World 
Africa 
Americas 
Asia-Pacific 
Europe 
Middle East 
South Asia 
-------------
From Our Own Correspondent 
-------------
Letter From America 
UK 
UK Politics 
Business 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 


The BBC's Barnaby Phillips in Abuja
"Behind this publicity stunt was a serious message"
 real 28k

Wednesday, 19 April, 2000, 02:47 GMT 03:47 UK
Giant mosquito net unveiled
Mosquito
The malarial mosquito - a big killer in Africa
The world's largest mosquito net has been unveiled at a ceremony in the Nigerian capital, Abuja.

Measuring 20m across and 225 times larger than a normal mosquito net, it was made as part of a World Health Organisation (WHO) campaign to increase awareness about the disease malaria.



Organisations in malaria-affected areas of the world should use treated bednets to protect the health of their families and themselves

Stella Obasanjo
Malaria, which is carried by mosquitoes, kills about one million people each year - about 90% of those are African children, according to WHO figures.

Nigeria will host a one-day WHO summit of African leaders and non-government organisations on malaria next week.

An official from the Guinness Book of Records was on hand to confirm the 3m high net as the largest ever produced.

Killer disease

During the ceremony, 225 school students sheltered under the net, which had been treated with insecticide to repel mosquitoes.

"Communal organisations, women's groups and other organisations in malaria-affected areas of the world should use treated bednets to protect the health of their families and themselves," said Nigeria's first lady, Stella Obasanjo.

"No effort should be spared in spreading this practice to the rural and remote parts of all affected countries."

The BBC's Nigeria correspondent, Barnaby Phillips, says that behind the somewhat bizarre publicity stunt is a serious message.

In Asia and in South America, malaria is on the retreat; but in Africa, it continues to spread.

The collapse of health systems, environmental changes, and drug resistance have all contributed to the resurgence of the disease.

WHO says the increased distribution of mosquito bed nets is one very effective way of combating the disease.

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
BBC RADIO NEWS
BBC ONE TV NEWS
WORLD NEWS SUMMARY
PROGRAMMES GUIDE
Africa Contents

Country profiles
See also:

02 Nov 99 | Sci/Tech
Researchers map malaria parasite
26 Jul 99 | Medical notes
Malaria
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to other Africa stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Africa stories