Livestock markets closed indefinitely
Saturday October 28, 2023
KNA By Richard Muhambe
Four prominent livestock markets in West Pokot County were on Friday closed indefinitely owing to outbreak of foot and mouth disease in some parts of the county.
In a notice sent to national and county government departments, County Director of Veterinary Services Dr. Samwel Chelimo declared on October 27, 2023 that cattle, goats, sheep, pigs, camels, donkeys and their products should be detained within the county.
Dr Chelimo announced that Chepareria, Ortum, Cheptuiya and Kishaunet livestock markets remain closed until further notice with animals in the mapped areas remaining under restricted movements.
He noted that no animal or stock shall be moved from the identified areas without a written permission from the Director of Veterinary Service or the Veterinary officer or inspector from the affected areas.
“All stock in any such area shall be herded as far as possible from any public road. No person shall leave any area without having complied with such reasonable precautions for preventing the spread of the disease as may be required by the veterinary officer or inspector in charge of the area,” stated the Vet Director.
Dr. Chelimo added that carcasses of all animals suspected to have died in the area from the disease should either be buried not less 4 feet below the surface or burnt at the expense of the owner.
Chepareria market is one of the largest livestock markets in the country with traders coming from across the country as far as Nairobi, meaning its closure will have an impact on the meat supply in other parts of the country.
Most West Pokot livestock farmers practice pastoralism and with the imposition of quarantine, this means livestock movements will be limited.