EAC to step up control of cross-border disease spread

KIREHE – The East African Community (EAC) needs to do more to prevent spread of human and animal diseases across the borders, an EAC official has  said. Jean Claude Nsengiyunva, the Deputy Secretary General in charge of Productive and Social Sectors in EAC, said this while visiting Rusumo border on Thursday.

KIREHE – The East African Community (EAC) needs to do more to prevent spread of human and animal diseases across the borders, an EAC official has  said.

Jean Claude Nsengiyunva, the Deputy Secretary General in charge of Productive and Social Sectors in EAC, said this while visiting Rusumo border on Thursday.

“It is imperative that we realise the mutual concern to fight diseases that may cross from one  country to the next.  If we can do so, we shall have contributed immensely to the integration initiative,” said the EAC official.

During this visit, Nsengiyunva and a team of other EAC officials met with Kirehe District officials.

Bernadette Kamungu, the district vice Mayor in charge of Social Affairs, said the discussions focused on a number of concerns such as checking the spread of diseases including swine flu.

“We were mainly discussing diseases like H1N1 (Swine flue), foot and mouth disease, etc. We shared great experience and concern on the technical level since the visitors were actually technicians,” she said.

The vice Mayor assured the EAC delegation of Rwanda’s cooperation in curbing irregularities that surface along the borders.

Tanzanians have previously complained that cow diseases in most cases come from Rwanda.

The officials agreed to find a solution to curb illegal movement of cattle.

“You see when smuggling is in place… it will always be difficult for us to check the spread of identified disease incidences,” Kamungu added.

The issue of H1N1 Swine Flue however, was not seen as a great threat, since some important precautions had been put in place well before the out break of the pandemic.

“We shared experience with those people from countries that had the pandemic before us…and I am happy to note that Rwanda is well equipped and prepared. Every health centre has enough H1N1 medicine for instance,” said the vice Mayor.

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