Hoima, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | An outbreak of the Goat Plague has killed more than 200 goats at Mbegu landing site Buseruka Sub County, Hoima district.
Goat Plague is also known as peste des petits ruminants. The disease is characterised by sudden onset of depression, fever, discharge from the eyes and nose, sores in the mouth, breathing difficulties and cough, foul-smelling diarrhoea and death.
The goats started dying three weeks ago leaving many goat farmers stranded. Most of the goat farmers are forced to bury carcasses as people fear to eat their meat.
The affected goats present symptoms like diarrhoea, coughing, sneezing, discharge from the eyes and nose making breathing difficult and forcing eyes shut before dying.
Suleiman Waaku, the Mbegu Landing site LCI Chairperson who lost his 20 goats to the disease explains that the residents became too scared and concerned following the massive death of their goats. He says the outbreak of the disease has economically affected farmers since most of them had invested in goat rearing.
Foste Ageya, another goat farmer who lost 182 goats in two weeks says he has lost more than 20 Million Shillings following the death of his goats.
Clever Oringi who is also practising goat farming says he lost 30 of his goats to the disease saying most farmers in the area have lost hope of further rearing goats. He wants the government to intervene and have the situation controlled immediately.
Dr Patrick Ndorwa, the Hoima district Veterinary officer says that the blood samples from some of the sick animals that were taken to the National Animal Disease Diagnosis and epidemiology Center-NADDEC turned positive for the plague.
He says that the district has secured 3,000 doses to vaccinate the goats.
Dr Ndorwa adds that currently over 1,000 goats have already been vaccinated at Mbegu landing site to help fight the outbreak and also prevent the disease from further spreading to other sub-counties.
He warns against the transportation of goats and sheep from Mbegu landing site to other areas within the district to avoid the disease from spreading to other sub-counties and other neighbouring districts.