studies suggest that there may be an association between environmental exposure
to waste dumpsites and malaria. The aim of this study was to investigate whether
residential proximity to waste dumpsites result in increased rate of morbidity for
malaria among the most vulnerable population groups such as children under the age
of five. A total of 150 children between the ages of one and five years were sampled
in a residential neighbourhood in Ikom, Ikom. Data were obtained from the parents
of the subjects with the aid of a specially- designed and well-structured questionnaire,
review of hospital records, and assessment of exposure and assessment of larval
abundance. Results showed that among the subjects within the total sample of 150
subjects, there were 1670 reported cases of malaria among the subjects within 11months
study period. Of this total, 1272 (76.1%) cases were treated in zone A (distance
below 500 meters) and 398 (23.8%) in zone B (distance more than 500 meters). The
Spearman correlation coefficient calculated between rate of morbidity and distance
from dumpsite in zone A was r = 1.12 (p < 0.05) and was adjusted for other factors
that may have contributed to the disease. The overall results showed that children
living within a distance below 500 meters from the dumpsite (zone A) are 3.5 times
more likely to suffer malaria than those living beyond 500meters’ distance (zone
B). A trend of lower incidence of malaria was therefore noted among children living
in zone B. These results show that municipal waste dumpsites create pathological
zones in which disease vectors proliferate and pose significant dangers within the
disposals, residential neighbourhoods, malaria, proximity, under-five children.
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