First of all, the relevance of the question lies in the fact that 2020 received a lot of comparison to 1920 because of the similarities between the two years on account of the character and the devastation caused by the Spanish Flu and Covid-19 respectively. Many reports referred to the Spanish Flu that lasted between 1918-1920. The ‘juice’ in the 100years cycle between the two monsters was too fascinating and irresistible for some people. So, naturally we followed the logical next step. Which is to find out what the year after 1920 looked like. How did 1921 look in terms of the overall health presentation of Nigeria?
Thankfully, the Flu of the previous year did not dominate the health situation of Nigeria. According to the 1921 Colonial Annual Report on Nigeria printed and published by His Majesty’s Stationery Office:
“The general health of the Colony and Protectorate has, throughout the year, been good, with the exception of an outbreak of cerebro-spinal meningitis in the Sokoto and Kontagora Provinces. This outbreak, starting towards the end of 1920, reached its maximum about April and gradually died down as the rains set in. The extent of country affected was in area about equal to that of Scotland, and the case mortality was high. The customary sporadic outbreaks of small pox were reported from time to time but the disease did not attain epidemic proportions.”
*Footnote – what is the purpose of this post today? Our intention is not to encourage indifference and careless habits with regards to the general guidelines for keeping Covid-19 away but to add a dose of hope to the arsenal of all our readers as we embrace a winning attitude these early days of 2021.
*The 26-page report is available online.