Agriculture to shift red-line far north- Naruseb
The Ministry of Agriculture has plans to shift the Veterinary Cordon Fence otherwise known as the red-line to the Namibia-Angola border, Alpheus Naruseb has said.
The shifting of the VCF requires clear minds and a very well thought-out strategic approach, he said.
“It is indeed a long-term strategy that will gradually move the VCF further north. However, in the interim or rather a medium-term approach the ministry will continue with its vigorous vaccination campaigns in the Northern Communal Area. It is a campaign aimed at establishing disease freedom as far as Foot and Mouth Disease and Lung sickness are concerned.”
“Vaccination against FMD will particularly be intensified in the FMD infected zones which cover the Zambezi region and the Mukwe and Ndiyona constituencies in Kavango East region in order to reduce the frequency of FMD outbreaks of the presence of free-roaming wild African buffaloes which are carriers of the virus,” he said.
Naruseb also said that intensifying the surveillance of animal movements complements the vaccinations.
“Operationalising the abattoirs in the Northern Communal Areas will allow commodity-based trading in line with the guidelines of the World Organisation for Animal Health to enhance access to markets. Therefore, the ministry has an ongoing project to construct, upgrade and renovate all the abattoirs and meat processing facilities in the Northern Communal Areas.”
“These areas include Opuwo, Outapi, Oshakati, Eenhana, Rundu and Katima Mulilo abattoirs including the meat processing facilities at Ongwediva and Bukalo. Furthermore, the ministry will establish feedlots in selected areas in the Northern Communal Areas where livestock can be fed with quality fodder supplied from the Green Scheme Irrigation projects in order to improve the quality of livestock destined for the market with a view to improving the prices for the communal farmers,” he said.
Naruseb also said that access of livestock farmers to the markets will also be increased through compartmentalising certain areas along the VCF.