Pakwach District in Uganda is conducting a vaccination campaign to protect its cattle and goats from a severe disease called Contagious Bovine Pleuro-pneumonia (CBPP). This disease causes immediate death in animals, darkening their lungs and pancreas.
Dr. Robert Canpara, the district’s veterinary officer, revealed that they have received 40,000 doses of vaccines from the Agriculture ministry. So far, they have vaccinated 15,965 goats across three sub-counties.
Goat farming is a thriving business in the West Nile Sub-region and neighboring DR Congo due to high market demand. Many farmers, like Mr. George Kermundu in Panyimur Sub-county, ventured into goat farming with the hope of earning a sustainable income. However, the disease outbreak wiped out Mr. Kermundu’s 100 goats, causing him significant financial losses.
Mr. Kermundu described the disease as mysterious, with no visible signs except for sudden goat deaths. He is now focused on vaccinating his remaining 400 goats to ensure their survival.
Another farmer, Mr. Paul Kinobe, lost 168 out of 450 goats and 10 out of 330 cattle to the disease. He attributed the outbreak to the introduction of infected hybrid goats in the district and urged the government to supply disease-free goats.
Ms. Grace Nikumurotho from Panyango Sub-county also suffered substantial losses, losing 200 goats.
CBPP is a highly contagious respiratory disease of cattle, classified as a notifiable disease by the World Organisation for Animal Health. It primarily affects the lungs when animals inhale CBPP bacteria.
The disease was first reported in Pakwach in April, impacting five sub-counties: Alwi, Pakwach, Panyimur, Panyimur Town Council, and Panyango. Since then, approximately 76,000 goats and 36,000 cattle have been affected.
To prevent the disease’s spread, Pakwach local government imposed a quarantine in the affected sub-counties and Murchison National Park in June. The Resident District Commissioner, Mr. Paul Eseru, emphasized the need for increased vaccination efforts and surveillance to manage the disease effectively.