Foot and Mouth Disease Outbreak in Nakasongola

3463 Views Nakasongola, Uganda

In short
Nakasongola District Veterinary department has imposed a quarantine on cattle and its products following the outbreak of Foot and Mouth disease in the district.

The disease has so far killed eight and left scores of heads of cattle infected with the disease in Nakasongola town and Wabinyonyi Sub County.
The Foot and Mouth disease (FMD) is a severe, highly contagious viral disease. The virus causes illness in cows, pigs, sheep, goats, deer, and other animals with divided hooves. An infected animal presents with loss of appetite, sticky or foamy saliva, and reluctance to move, fever and blisters on the tongue, mouth and foot.
Dr. Sam Eswaggu, the Nakasongola District Veterinary Officer announced the quarantine today after a directive issued by Commissioner of animal resources in Ministry Of Agriculture, Animal and Fisheries yesterday.
Eswaggu says that they have banned the buying and movement of cattle from and to the entire district until the disease is contained.

He adds that police and local leaders have been notified to ensure all cattle markets are closed till further notice .

Eswaggu says that currently, the farmers have been advised to buy vaccines from local veterinary shops till when the ministry offer free vaccines and other measures are taken.
John Kasaana, a pastoralist at Wabinyonyi village in Nakasongola town says 20 heads of cattle in his kraal have been attacked by the disease but the vaccines are expensive in local veterinary shops.

Kasaana adds that the outbreak will adversely affect his income because he entirely depends on sale of cattle to maintain the family.

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But Nakasongola Town Clerk Umar Ntege says that livestock business is still going on because he has not received a letter from Chief Administrative Officer Suleiman Kasozi who has mandate to announce the quarantine.

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Other leaders say that the quarantine greatly affects local revenues and it is hard to implement it.

Fredrick Banumba the councilor for Nakitoma Sub County blames the spread on laxity by veterinary office to stop the selling of cattle from nearby districts that include Apac and Masindi which are affected by the disease.

Foot and Mouth Disease has also been reported in Nakaseke and parts of Luweero district.

Nakasongola district has over 264,000 heads of cattle and it is a major source of income to local people.


About the author

Brian Luwaga
Since Brian Luwaga joined Uganda Radio Network in 2011, he is still amazed how, "URN is a place that gives journalists a chance to enhance their skills . It gives a journalist an opportunity to adopt and master various aspects of journalism that include radio broadcast, social media, photography and television production."

A practicing journalist since 2009, first with Star FM, Luwaga has always been keen to write about the concerns of the "common person." Based for much of his career in Luweero, Luwaga takes it as a compliment if politicians complain that his reporting is too harsh.

In his journalism, Luwaga likes to merge the past with the present. He believes you cannot understand what is happening now, if you do not have a grounding in the past. Brian Luwaga is the Luweero URN bureau chief. Nakasongola, Nakaseke, Mityana, Mubende and Wakiso districts fall under his docket.

Luwaga is interested in humanitarian work and is a keen Rotarian.