Affected Districts Given Half A Million Foot and Mouth Disease Vaccines.
Written by Derrick Asaba on July 30, 2021
The Minister of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF), Frank Tumwebaze has handed over 0.5M Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) vaccines to the districts that are affected by this disease.
The vaccines were handed to District Veterinary Officers (DVOs) at an event hosted in Entebbe yesterday aimed at curbing down the strength of the FMD infection in livestock.
Some of the beneficiary districts of this initiative are Kiruhura, Rakai, Kyotera, Kazo, Lwengo, Lyantonde, Kalungu, Ntoroko, Mbarara, Ibanda, Kamwenge, Isingiro, Teso, Karamoja among other districts.
During the ceremony, Tumwebaze noted that the vaccines given out were with a clear intent and cautioned DVOs against any form of mishandling and corruption.
“We emphasize DVOs to observe the law, abide by the quarantine guidelines and be incorruptible while giving out this vaccine not to sell it to private veterinary facilities,” Tumwebaze emphasized.
Tumwebaze further advised that if for instance one farm is affected, all the other farms around it should be equally vaccinated to curtail continuous spread of the disease and called for adherence to guidelines by the government.
“We ask farmers to follow the advice given by the government. If you are asked not to transport livestock in affected communities, please abide by because when you bleach the law, the disease stays, thereby lengthening the quarantine period. We won’t open up an area if the disease is not minimal,” said Tumwebaze.
In comparison to the former times to the present, Tumwebaze noted that the eastern region hasn’t been affected as much as the Central and western regions have been, by FMD.
He also revealed that the vaccines are purchased from Kenya but the government is still faced with a challenge as regards insufficiency of vaccines since the world has disastrously been affected by COVID-19.
“However, we still have a challenge because we ordered about 2 million vaccines but so far this is what has been delivered,” Tumwebaze said.
Tumwebaze discouraged persons who tend to politicise the fight against FMD by promising people to open up cattle markets yet they know little about the cause of closure.
“Many politicians lie to the people that they are going to open up markets but little do they know about the root cause of its closure. So, the public should stay observant,” he noted.
Previously in May this year, the minister of Animal husbandry, Bright Rwamirama revealed that vaccination was being carried out in 47 districts at risk of the Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) which broke out in February.
According to Rwamirama, illegal animal movements within the country and across international borders for pasture, water and for trade purposes highly encourage spread of FMD.
Also, unprofessional practices like issuance of animal movement permits for animals from affected areas were highlighted to highly accelerate the spread of FMD.
This therefore made control of animal movements extremely important and was hence to be regarded so, by all stakeholders in the animal industry if diseases were to be controlled.
A ban on livestock movements from areas that are under quarantine was one of the restrictions put by the Ministry to prevent animal disease spread.
Initially, the ministry procured 2.3 million FMD doses to carry out strategic vaccination of animals in affected and high-risk areas.
The supply and delivery of the vaccine consignment was phased and by May, FMD vaccination was already being undertaken in 47 districts countrywide especially in the four districts that were most affected, that is; Isingiro, Kiruhura, Kazo and Rakai.