The Government of Zimbabwe has suspended with immediate effect the importation of livestock and related products from South Africa. The suspension follows notification by the South African Veterinary Authorities of an outbreak of foot and mouth disease (FMD) on a farm in Molemole District of Limpopo Province earlier on this month.
In a statement, The Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Water, Climate and Rural Resettlement, Department of Veterinary Services advised the public and stakeholders of the ban of the importation of live cattle, goats, sheep and pigs from South Africa.
DVS director, Dr Josphat Nyika said South Africa is currently in the process of identifying the virus strain, extent of the outbreak and conducting backward and forward tracing to determine possible origin of the virus as well as locations to which the disease might have spread.
The statement stipulates that the ban is in operation until a full report on the outbreak has been availed by the South African Veterinary Authorities. Moreover, it serves as a precautionary measure designed to prevent spread of infection into Zimbabwe through the importation of live animals and animal products.
Dr. Nyika added that the Department will continues monitoring the situation with a view to normalizing trade with the Republic of South Africa as soon as the outbreak is controlled.