Farms affected by foot and mouth disease to put down animals: Didiza

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The Minister of Agriculture Land Reform and Rural Development, Thoko Didiza says farms, where foot and mouth disease has been positively detected, will have to put down their animals in order to stop the disease’s spread.

Speaking in Bloemfontein on Thursday ahead of this weekend’s Presidential Imbizo, Didiza says the affected provinces will work together to stop the spread of the disease.

Tests conducted on two farms in Viljoenskroon have confirmed one positive case. The third farm in Frankfort is still under investigation.

The farmers procured animals from a farm that tested positive in Potchefstroom in the North West, and from an auction that was held on March 18 in the same town.

Didiza says the government is taking steps to ensure the disease is contained. “So the penetrative measures have been taken. Gauteng is going to cull those animals to make sure that there’s no further spread. North West is taking the same approach with national assistance, and I’m sure the Free State will as well because we want to ensure that we don’t reintroduce foot and mouth disease in areas where we have dealt with it for a long time.“

She adds, “Contain it and work in those areas where at the moment foot and mouth is endemic. We will be announcing further measures that we will take.”

VIDEO: Foot and mouth disease outbreak in Free State: Dr Kristan Mojapelo