8 January 2013

Gambia: Authorities Campaign Against Contagious Disease in NBR

Nbr — Since the outbreak of the contagious Bovine Pleurpneumonia disease in the country sometime in 2012, authorities have been busy raising the awareness of the local farmers on the deadly disease, with a view to containing its further prevalence.

The latest sensitisation initiative took the officials of the Department of Livestock Service in the North Bank Region to Kerr Jarga community in the Jokadu District of the region, where farmers and local authorities converged to devise ways of putting the disease at bay.

Speaking to this reporter in an interview, the director of Livestock Services, Dr. Kebba Daffeh, called on the cattle farmers and herders to be vigilant and report respiratory tract infectiondiseases on cattle to the regional livestock offices.

Dr. Daffeh used the opportunity to inform cattle farmers that a vaccination campaign would commence in earnest, while urging farmers to support veterinary frontline extension workers in the fight against the disease.

The chiefs of Jokadu and Central Baddibu Districts, Jim Fatma Jobe, and Alagie Jagne, respectively, applauded the sensitisation initiative, and assured of their local authorities' support.

Also speaking to this reporter, the deputy governor of the North Bank Region, Mustapha Saidy, lauded the efforts of the Department of Livestock Services in protecting the cattle against the disease.

Deputy Governor Saidy seized the opportunity to thank Action Aid International The Gambia for complementing the efforts of the government in raising public awareness on the outbreak of the cattle disease. He said the awareness campaign would not only help in containing the disease, but also contribute to cattle productivity.

The regional agricultural director in NBR, Dr. Saikou E. Sanyang, for his part, affirmed the government's commitment to food security and poverty reduction. He underscored that the awareness creation on this contagious disease would help farmers to adopt best practices in cattle production.To ensure food security in the country, according to Dr. Sanyang, there is the need for concerted efforts of all stakeholders.

The chairperson of the Lower Baddibu Livestock Association (LBLA), Kebba Sowe, who also spoke at the occasion, hailed the efforts of the Department of Agriculture and Action Aid International The Gambia for the laudable initiatives, which he said have enhanced the knowledge of farmers.

The regional livestock officer, Momodou Darboe, affirmed his Department's commitment in containing contagious cattle disease, while hailing the efforts of district authorities and herders for their support.

The regional disaster coordinator, Momodou BK Ceesay, and the regional forestry officer, Ebou Janha , pledged their support to the campaign, and called on the communities to desist from cracking bushfires.

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