The Rwanda Agriculture Board (RAB) is advising Burundian refugees who fled with their livestock to sell off the animals amidst concerns over vaccines and pasture.
More than 24,000 Burundian refugees crossed into Rwanda over the last one month, fleeing from political instability linked to forthcoming parliamentary and presidential elections.
Upto 443 cows and 89 goats owned by 20 families have since arrived in the country.
Speaking to The New Times, Dr Isidore Gafarasi, the director of veterinary services at RAB, said that all the animals were vaccinated and given identification tags.
“We have been receiving cattle and goats. We vaccinated all of them against foot and mouth disease. The animals are kept in Kibugaga, Kamabuye under the care of Rwanda Agriculture Board. After one month, the refugees will decide whether to sell off or look after their animals,” Gafarasi said.
He explained that even as the refugees are now settled in Mahama camp in Kirehe District their animals remain in Bugesera District.
“Rwanda Agriculture Board is playing a big role in ensuring security of refugees and their animals. We have dug water dams for cows. The cows are being reared on public land estimated at more than 500 hectares,” he said.
He added that RAB has since run out of vaccines.
“Rwanda Agriculture Board is ready to help anyone who wishes to sell off their animals. We will help them to find buyers,” he added.