The government ordered the closure of markets including livestock markets earlier this year however, food markets remained open but with strict observance of the Standard Operating Procedures issued by the Ministry of Health to prevent the spread of COVID- 19.
The closure of livestock markets has adversely affected livestock farmers and their livelihood has been severely threatened.
The Minister for Agriculture in charge of Animal Industry and Fisheries Hon. Bright Rwamirama has this afternoon announced the lifting of the lockdown on livestock markets under strict guidelines.
“Livestock markets owners have been encouraged to have infrastructures such as a complete and intact perimeter fence with an entrance and exit gate, inspection crush, veterinary office, loading and off-loading ramps, latrines/toilets, source of water, and handwashing facilities et al, in order to abide by the Ministry of Health COVID-19 prevention guidelines.”
He says the purpose of these guidelines is to facilitate trade in animals and animal products while minimizing the risk of spread of COVID-19 in humans and animal diseases.
The guidelines shall be used with strict adherence to the Animal diseases, Cattle Traders Act and Standard Operating Procedures issued by the Ministry of Health for prevention of the spread of COVID- 19, he added.
However, the markets in districts under any form of animal quarantine will not be allowed to open until the Commissioner Animal Health officially lifts the quarantine in those areas after undertaking the necessary animal movement control, vaccinations, investigations and disease monitoring.