Saturday, July 13, 2024

Sporadic outbreak of anthrax recorded in Western Province

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Some districts in Western Province are reportedly hit by a sporadic outbreak of anthrax. This has prompted government to embark on vaccinations against the disease to prevent it from spreading further.

Western Province Fisheries and Livestock Coordinator, Kelvin Kampamba has confirmed the development to ZANIS in Mongu today.

Dr Kampamba said the province received over 40,000 thousand doses of anthrax vaccine to vaccinate all the animals in the affected districts.

“The field Staff are already in the field vaccinating animals in the affected districts,” he disclosed.

Dr Kampamba also revealed that the department is carrying-out campaigns against Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) in a bid to sensitise cattle owners to be wary of the disease.

“We are currently conducting campaigns against FMD in Mulobezi, Sesheke and Mwandi districts so that livestock can take measures against the disease,” he stated.

Dr Kampamba noted that cattle is predominantly a source of livelihood for the people of Western Province hence the government’s decision to provide vaccines to control the diseases that affect animals.

He said as part of the control system the department was also branding the animals for movement control in the province.

“Cattle branding is an integral part of the disease control system as animals are easily identified during movement,” Dr Kampamba emphasised.

And Mongu District Veterinary Officer, Mukuni Mubita said livestock farmers were responding positively to the government vaccination exercise which has been going on for some weeks now.

Dr Mubita said the district received sporadic cases of anthrax in some parts of Nalikwanda Constituency where the disease is endemic.

“So far we are moving on well with the vaccination exercise. Cattle owners are also responding positively,” he said.

And one of the farmers in Nalikwanda, Boyd Silumesi, thanked the government for providing the vaccines which he could not afford on his own.

Anthrax is a disease which affects warm blooded animals including cattle.

Humans can also be affected especially when one consumes an anthrax infected carcass.

1 COMMENT

  1. The issue of cattle diseases in this region is compounded by the unclear and porous boundary, especially with Angola although there’s a higher traffic of livestock between Zambia and Namibia. The ban on livestock movement through Kafue National Park has affected Western Province for a long time now. Somali businessmen with connections now take advantage of peasants by buying cattle cheaply which they slaughter at Senenga and transport the carcasses through the park to Lusaka and Copperbelt. Branding to help control cattle movement and might reduce the occurrence of diseases. Western province produces good beef but farmers get a raw deal because of diseases. Let’s not jus respond when there’s an outbreak

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