Livestock movement ban in Kunene lifted

10 Jun 2015 16:50pm
OPUWO, 10 JUN (NAMPA) - The ban on livestock movement in Kunene north that has been in place since 19 May this year to help curb the spread of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD), was lifted on Wednesday.
Speaking at a media briefing in Opuwo on Wednesday, the veterinary surgeon of the Opuwo District, Simbarashe Chipunga said farmers are allowed to move their livestock, meat and milk products in Kunene north as the Kunene Region is in a containment area.
He said cross-border trade of livestock with Angola is however not allowed and if it has to be done, all legal procedures must be followed.
Also speaking at the event, the Namibian Police Force (NamPol)’s Deputy Inspector-General for Operations, Major General James Tjivikua, who conducted a week-long tour of the FMD-affected areas in the northern communal areas (NCAs), said all checkpoints were visited, including the border line between Namibia and Angola.
He said areas visited included the Kavango West, Ohangwena, Oshikoto, Oshana, Omusati and Kunene regions.
Tjivikua added that a number of animal movement control checkpoints have been set up along major roads across the affected areas since the disease was initially detected on 11 May this year in the Ohangwena Region’s Okongo Constituency and Okankolo Constituency in the Oshikoto Region.
“As a result of the outbreak of FMD, 48 control checkpoints were made operational across the affected areas, with five checkpoints in Kavango, eight in Ohangwena, seven in Oshikoto, five in Oshana, nine in Omusati and 14 in the Kunene Region,” he noted.
NamPal announced last week that it is committing the police helicopter to assist in all activities aimed at containing FMD, including the vaccination of animals.
Members of the police force flew 21 hours covering about 4 567 kilometres to visit the affected NCAs.
Tjivikua applauded community members in all affected areas for cooperating with the police during the implementation of the strict animal control and monitoring mechanisms to ensure the containment of the disease.
In the Kunene Region, only one bull was put down after it crossed the veterinary cordon fence, while another 11 cattle in the same region have been confiscated and will be destroyed after they crossed the veterinary cordon fence into the southern regions.
Last month, the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry announced that Government will spend about N.dollars 119 million on the vaccination of close to 1.2 million cattle against FMD in the north-central regions of Namibia.
FMD is highly contagious and is spread by the movement of infected animals and animal products, including contaminated vehicles, clothes, shoes and other objects.
The MAWF further confirmed that in all cases reported, cattle from Namibia came in contact with cattle grazing in some parts of the Cuando Cubango Province of Angola.