Story by Peter Chivhima
THE Government says it will continue with research and development to boost the national herd with the locally manufactured Bolvac vaccine ready for rolling out.
In an effort to resuscitate the national herd and turn it into a US$1,9 billion United States dollar industry by 2025, the Second Republic introduced several strategies which include directing the Veterinary Services to manufacture vaccines to protect animals against diseases.
This Thursday, ZBC News toured government laboratories at Veterinary Services Offices in Harare to appreciate the scope of the government’s initiative, with the department revealing that it is ready to roll out the Bolvac vaccine across the country after successful test runs.
“This is very important to the national herd. So far we have managed to come up with three vaccines out of four types of ticks that normally affect cattle, so we are convinced that with these three we can boost our national herd,” said Acting Chief Director Directorate of Veterinary Services, Dr Pious Makaya.
Veterinary Services Deputy Director Diagnostics and Research, Dr Chenai Majuru says no one and no place shall be left behind.
“At the moment we are training our people across the country so that they can respond in case of an outbreak. So the training involves how our people can administer the vaccine. These people will also be able to train others, especially in remote areas because we are moving in line with the President’s mantra of leaving no one and no place behind. We are doing this so that we achieve our goals of food self-sufficiency.”
Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development Permanent Secretary, Professor Obert Jiri pledged the government’s commitment to boost the national herd, revealing that the vaccine is ready for distribution to the affected communities.
“We have the Bolvac vaccine we have produced, our scientists produced a very effective vaccine. We are already rolling it out under supervision since it passed through the stage of clinical trial and we have enough in case of the January disease outbreak.”
The government is working towards turning the livestock sector into a 1.9 billion United States dollar industry by 2025, with plans on the cards to achieve a target of 11 million cattle by 2030.