Dogs in South Sudan’s Capital Vaccinated Amid Rise In Cases Of Rabies

By Kidega Livingstone

South Sudan’s Central Equatoria State has commenced a week long vaccination of dogs following rise in cases of rabies cases around Juba City.

Alex Latiyo Elia, State Minister of Animal Resources, Fisheries and Tourism said that they have registered cases of rabies due to dog bites in five residential in the capital.

These include Lologo, Kator, Mauna, Rajaf and Juba Nabari.

“There is a wide spread of the virus (rabies) detected in those localities in Juba city. So there are massive cases of rabies in Juba,” he told The Juba Echo on Tuesday.

Rabies is a deadly virus spread to people from the saliva of infected animals. The rabies virus is usually transmitted through a bite. Animals most likely to transmit rabies include bats, coyotes, foxes, raccoons and skunks.

“As the ministry in collaboration with partners, we have come up with vaccination campaign in Juba and later on will move to other states. It aims to control the virus that can be shared from animals to human being,” said Latiyo.

The vaccination under the theme “Rabies kill, vaccinate your dog” is supported by the Food and Agricultural Organization and it is being implemented by Veterinaires Sans Frontiers Germany in collaboration with the State Animals’ Ministry.

At least three people have been recently treated of rabies at Juba Teaching Hospital.

However, the State Minister said the ongoing vaccination is one of the measures put in place to curb the spread of the virus.

Latiyo said that they will continue to create awareness so that citizens get informed about the virus.

He revealed that the health of dogs is important as they provide security at various homes.

Latiyo warned careless drivers in Juba to stop hitting dogs on the streets for the purpose of maintaining healthy environment in the city.

George Kamilo Ladu, 1st Director General in the Ministry of Animal Resource, Fisheries and Tourism, said that the vaccination is crucial given the high number of stray dogs in Juba.

 “We are seeing many dogs in all most all the streets in Juba that is why we want to start with Juba then we shall go to other places,” said Kamilo .

In 2017, South Sudan pledged to enhance vaccination and strengthen animal health regulation to curb wide spread of rabies.

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