No fewer than three persons have been confirmed dead, while several others are under watch in Jalingo, the Taraba State capital, following the outbreak of Lassa Fever in the state. This was revealed by the World Health Organisation through its Surveillance Officer, Dr. Bello Ahmed, on Tuesday at a sensitisation workshop on Lassa Fever, organised by the Tarabe State Ministry of Health. Represented by Dr. Zeto Philip, the Surveillance Officer said 12 cases have been reported, three confirmed dead, while three positive cases have been placed under close monitoring. Bello, who said six local governments — Bali, Ibi, Gassol, Gashaka, Jalingo and Ardo-Kola — in Taraba State have been placed on red alert, explained that two deaths have so far been recorded in Jalingo and one in Ardo-Kola, putting the state at 25 per cent infection rate. The WHO representative further explained that the survey was conducted between January 1 and 28, with 367 contacts identified across the country and urged the public to be mindful of their personal hygiene and safety to mitigate the spread of the disease. Bello said: “We are planning collaboration with the Federal Government to develop a test kit for rapid diagnosis to complement the diagnosis centre at Irrua Specialist Hospital. “We want to call on the Federal Government to consider the establishment of, at least, one diagnostic and treatment centre in each of the zones across the country to effectively tackle the spread of the disease.” The Taraba State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Innocent Vakkai, in his remark, said the workshop was part of the state government’s efforts at creating awareness to mitigate the spread of the disease.