Foot-and-mouth disease strikes in Eastern Province

• Gatsibo, Kayonza in quarantine Foot and Mouth disease has struck in Gatsibo and Kayonza Districts of Eastern Province, and according to provincial authorities, more investigations are going on to establish if no other areas are affected.

• Gatsibo, Kayonza in quarantine

Foot and Mouth disease has struck in Gatsibo and Kayonza Districts of Eastern Province, and according to provincial authorities, more investigations are going on to establish if no other areas are affected.

In Gatsibo District the disease was first discovered in Gabiro farms and later spread to other parts of Kayonza District. According to Gatsibo Mayor, Vianney Murego, the district is now under quarantine since the beginning of April.

Speaking to The New Times on phone, the province’s Governor Dr. Ephraim Kabaija said that Rwanda Animal Resources Development Agency (RARDA) is trying it’s best to bring the situation back to normal in the shortest period.

“The disease erupted in Gatsibo and Kayonza districts, however there are some measures taken to ensure the situation comes back to normal within just a few days,” Kabaija observed.

Contacted, the head RARDA Dr Théogene Rutagwenda said that the after 21 days, there would be another assessment to observe if there are other outbreaks in the area. 

“We now have the situation in control; cattle that were diagnosed are being treated and 60,000 cows neighbouring the affected areas have been vaccinated and we’re still investigating,” Rutagwenda said.

Subsequent to the outbreak, milk production has since gone down leading to increment of prices from Rwf 400 to 600 per litre in Kigali City. The province is the leading supplier of milk in the country.

However, when contacted, Nyagatare District Mayor, Robert Kanshemeza said his district is not yet affected by the outbreak adding that there is no crisis in milk supply.

“We have enough milk. I think there are tricks by business people to raise the price, but the biggest quantity of milk comes from Nyagatare and other districts. Gatsibo has few heads of cattle,” Kanshemeza said.

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