1 The Minister of Agriculture, Agrarian Reform and Rural Development, Ms. Thoko Didiza, MP has taken the decision to suspend all movement of livestock throughout the country.
2 The Minister’s decision aims to stop the continued spread of foot-and-mouth disease in the country.
3 It also means that cattle may not be moved from one property to another for any reason for a period of 21 days reviewable weekly.
5 The Minister acknowledges the efforts made by farmers, communities and industries to curb illegal movements of animals from known positive areas and to improve biosecurity on animal farms.
6 However, the disease continues to spread, with 15 new properties and two new provinces affected in the last two weeks alone.
7 The ban will be declared in the Government Gazette.
8 Any breach of the traffic ban is a criminal offence.
9 The exception will be only with veterinary permission for: (i) Cattle for direct slaughter in registered slaughterhouses (ii) Slaughter for ritual purposes moving to the final destination after being sold, the local state veterinary office must be contacted to obtain these permits” said Minister Didiza.
10 Minister Didiza warns perpetrators who are illegally transporting livestock that they will be prosecuted for contravening the Animal Diseases Act 1984 (Act No. 35).
11 of 1984).
12 The Minister recognizes the great disturbance that the traffic ban will cause in the normal functioning of many sectors.
13 For this reason, the ban only applies to cattle, as the movement of cattle was identified as the main cause of the continued spread of the outbreaks.
14 However, the public is reminded that all cloven-hoofed animals can spread the FMD virus, and the movement of cloven-hoofed sheep, goats, pigs and game should also be handled with the necessary caution.
15 Animals showing suspicious clinical symptoms (salivation, blisters in the mouth, lameness or lesions on the hooves) must not be moved under any circumstances.
16 Members of the public should immediately contact the District State Veterinary Services or their private veterinarians.