By Richard Muponde
GOVERNMENT has instituted investigations into the sale of contaminated meat by some abattoirs, butcheries and illegal meat traders, which is putting the lives of the public at risk.
Cabinet resolved at yesterday’s meeting that culprits be brought to book.
“Regarding the reported slaughter and sale of contaminated cattle, the minister (Perrance Shiri, Agriculture) advised that as per procedure, the Veterinary Services Department supervises the slaughter of all livestock, while the distribution is monitored by the Ministry of Health and Child Care,” part of the post-Cabinet statement read.
“However, the reports are being investigated and the public with further information is urged to report to the relevant authorities.”
The decision came after the social media went ablaze with claims that some abattoirs were selling meat for human consumption from beasts killed by theileriosis, commonly referred to as January disease as well as foot and mouth disease.
Cabinet also revealed that the Central Veterinary Laboratory was in the process of producing vaccines to vaccinate livestock against diseases.
“With respect to livestock development, the minister reported that … the Central Veterinary Laboratory, in liaison with other research institutions, is in the process of producing vaccines for such diseases as theileriosis (January disease) as an import substitution measure. Other interventions to improve drought resilience for small holder livestock farmers include establishing pasture production sites and see multiplication centre to improve livestock,” Cabinet said.
Late last year, authorities shut down several butcheries for using embalming chemicals as meat preservatives to counter the adverse effects of load-shedding.