- Uriama, Pawor, Ogoko, Bileafe and Anyiribu Sub Counties are the most affected
- Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a zoonotic, viral, vector-borne disease representing a threat to human health, animal health and livestock production in Africa, the Near East and potentially, Europe and the rest of the world
- In humans, infected person presents signs of high fever, blood vomiting, passing blood in diarrhea and loss appetite
- The public is asked to report suspected cases immediately to health centers
ARUA. Livestock farmers in the district are counting loses after cases of Rift Valley Fever (RVF) has killed bout ten goats in the villages.
The fever, that mainly presents with signs of abortion especially in goats is less known to the farmers.
The District Veterinary Officer, Dr Willy Nguma, said the laboratory tests confirmed some of the samples positive to the fever. Dr Nguma said this would affect the livelihood of the farmers because many depend on goats and other livestock for income and for carrying out traditional marriages.
“Three out of the ten samples that we collected tested positive in October and in November two other cases tested positive and this affects the livelihood of the farmers.”
Dr Nguma said the fever mainly causes abortion in goats. He said people should desist from eating such carcasses of aborted fetus because of the socio-cultural behavior towards meat.
Rift Valley fever primarily affects sheep, goats, cattle, camels, buffaloes, and antelopes. The majority of human infections result from contact with the blood or organs of infected animals.
“We are trying to avoid is animal to human infections that is when people have to avoid eating carcasses and eating uncooked meat,” he added.
Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) notes that RVF are closely associated with periods of heavy rains and prolonged flooding, which increase habitat suitability for vector populations.
The socio-economic impact of the disease on people’s livelihoods and on trade can be high due to significant losses in livestock production (meat and milk), closure of livestock markets and bans on livestock movement and slaughtering.