L-R Dr. Victor Ayamo of the World Animal Protection, Dominic Mundrugo-Ogo Lali the President of Uganda Veterinary Association (UVA) and Prof. Lawrence Mugisha the General Secretary UVA speaking to journalists at Hotel Africana on Wednesday
Veterinarians are calling on government to revise the existing regulations in order to streamline quality assurance in livestock farming and trade. The call was made Wednesday during the annual Veterinary Symposium held at Hotel Africana.
They claim that most of the laws were crafted many years ago and have outlived their relevance especially in light of the new threats that the industry is faced with.
“As a body that represents livestock farmers and medics, we propose for a legal framework that will help curb disease outbreaks and other problems,” Dominic Mundrugo-Ogo Lali the President of Uganda Veterinary Association (UVA) told journalists in the sidelines of the forum.
“We still use the Disease Control Act (1964) and the Animal Welfare Act (1952) both of which is outdated along with the penalties they provide. The animals are still moved at night uninspected risking disease outbreaks,” he added.
Beside regulation, Mundrugo-Ogo said the industry also suffers inadequate extension services and breeding inputs which affects the quality of production.
“Majority of the farmers still rear local indigenous breeds which naturally mature slowly. The implication of this is – we can’t produce enough for the available market.”
Dr. Victor Ayamo of the World Animal Protection stressed the need to strengthen animal welfare and improvement of quality if local farmers are to tap into high end markets.
“Multinational businesses like KFC have stringent standards if you are to supply them with chicken or fish. Unfortunately, most of our local farmers can’t provide that quality and end up losing,” Dr. Ayamo said.
Other participants advocated for additional funding saying the current Ugsh 10 billion that goes into local governments isn’t enough. They also blamed technical deficiencies which they claim have cost them funding in grants.