KAYONZA – The rearing of exotic dairy goats has improved feeding and checked the threat of kwashiorkor among children in Kayonza district, according to Mayor Damas Muhororo.
“Goats are among the smallest domesticated animals and have served our people more than other types of livestock given our circumstances. Ending Kwashiorkor as our purpose was served,” he said.
He was talking to The New Times after meeting local leaders who had met to discuss the impact of various development projects in the area on Tuesday.
Dr. Robert Kimpe, of Kirehe Hospital explains that goats’ milk is rich with nutrients which children need for proper growth.
“One of the most common diseases of infants in most rural areas is kwashiorkor, a syndrome that results from a deficiency of protein in a diet relatively high in carbohydrates,” said the human medicine doctor.
“Kwashiorkor not only impairs physical development, but also stunts later intellectual growth. Goats milk is a solution in a way.”
Rosette Namara, a resident of Rukara sector said that people have embraced the rearing goats as opposed to cattle.
She added that people must change their negative attitude towards drinking goats’ milk.
“Food security is all about diversifying production…the rearing of goats is in this case a welcome move. I don’t see why we should be held hostage by our negative attitude towards goats’ milk,” she said.
On average, an exotic goat costs Rwf 50,000 which is out of reach for most rural farmers. Farmers have therefore been advised to cross-breed as a cheapest way to acquire the exotic dairy goats.