Monday , 24 February 2020

Mass goat vaccinations in Somalia welcomed by pastoralists

DUSA MAREB —  Around 2.2 million goats in central Somalia regions are targeted to receive vaccination from the deadly contagious caprine pleuropneumonia (CCPP) disease, which has devasted many pastoralist communities.

The mass livestock health campaign began on 25 January and is set to continue for two months.

Dr. Suleyman Mohamed Farah, the head of local veterinary organization CERELPA, told Radio Ergo that vaccinations had begun in districts in the Mudug region including Sadeh-Higlo, Dagari, Gawaan, Wisil, El-gula, Gelinsor, Budbud, and Hobyo, among others.

Dahir Mohamed Olow, a father of nine children living in Gawan district, had 47 of his 50 goats vaccinated against CCPP. His three goats suffering from the disease have been separated from the herd.

Dahir once owned a larger herd of 200 goats, but a combination of drought and diseases have taken a heavy toll. He lost four goats last month to CCPP, a disease that is affecting the livelihoods of many pastoralists in Gawan, 30 km from Hobyo.

“We have never seen CCPP vaccination before, and now the livestock have been vaccinated we don’t know whether the disease will come back or not, but this is a preventive measure, we hope that we will never see the disease in the upcoming years,” said Dahir.

Dahir said herders in his area had been injecting their goats with locally available antibiotics, as a ‘kill or cure’ method against sickness.

“The livestock used to be very sick, you would find them with runny noses, and we would inject them. If they were pregnant, they would be in trouble because they would either have a miscarriage, or they could recover,” he said

Dr. Suleyman said CCPP disease is quickly becoming the fastest spreading livestock disease in central Somalia. They plan to vaccinate more than a million goats in the southern Mudug region before they move to Galgadud in the coming days.

Aways Ahmed Ali, a father of five children, had 150 out of his 170 goats vaccinated.

“The goats were separated, the sick goats were kept in the shed, while the healthy ones were vaccinated. It is very important because it is something we needed, and it is free,” said Aways appreciatively.

“The people are now more aware of the vaccination program, and everybody is making sure they get their livestock immunized,” Aways added.

Dr. Suleyman told Radio Ergo that it is safe for people to consume the meat and milk of the vaccinated goats.

The vaccination campaign is supported by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).

Source: Radio Ergo

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