Mbarara. African swine fever is spreading rapidly in peri-urban areas of Mbarara Municipality and has killed more than 500 pigs since July last year, officials have said.
Mbarara District veterinary officer William Mwebembezi said last week samples have been sent to the National Animal Disease Diagnostic Epidemiological Centre (NADDEC) in Entebbe for examination.
Dr Mwebembezi last Wednesday directed that all pork joints and slaughter places be closed.
He said the disease is viral and has no treatment or vaccines to assist in containing it. Symptoms that can notify the farmer of the infection are the animal failing to feed and huddling together.
He appealed to farmers to stop introducing new animals into the old flock and to avoid collecting feeds from hotels and restaurants. Movements of the animals and their by-products have also been stopped until further notice.
The worst affected areas are Ngaara, Katojo, Nyakakoni and Ruti in Nyakayojo Division where even a veterinary officer lost a whole herd. Kakiika and Kamukuzi divisions are also affected.
Dr Mwebembezi advised farmers not to accept to be cheated by quack s who claim they have drugs to treat the disease.
The animal disease has also been reported in Rubaga Division in Kampala.