In January 2017, there was an outbreak of avian flu (otherwise known as Bird flu) in Uganda, this prompted many countries in Africa, including neighbors Kenya, to place a ban on poultry and poultry products from the country.
However, due to a swift response from government and stakeholders in the country, the issue was controlled and the country was declared free from avian flu in March of the same year.
Ugandan authorities have cried out on what they claim to be a contradiction to East African Community rules which promotes regional integration among member states. According to Uganda, Kenya has refused to lift its ban on poultry products from the country despite the fact that the country has been declared free from avian flu.
Speaking on the ban which she said is illegal, Uganda's Assistant Commissioner of Veterinary Regulation and Enforcement, Doris Kiconco said that she is surprised that despite the fact that Kenyan officials had visited Uganda in October 2017 (seven months after they were declared free) to assess the efforts made in containing the outbreak, the country was yet to officially lift the ban.
"We have written several letters requesting that the ban is lifted officially, but we have never received a response," said Dr. Kiconco.
She demanded that an official announcement be made in writing by the authorities that the ban on poultry and poultry products from Uganda has been lifted since the initial announcement made when the ban was placed was written.
She said without the letter, Ugandan poultry farmers and businessmen who engage in export to Kenya will continue to be stopped and turned back by Kenyan immigration that cite the effective ban as the reason for their actions.
Avian influenza, also known as avian flu or Bird flu is a viral infection that can infect not only birds but also humans and other animals. Most forms of the virus are restricted to birds.
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Header Image Credit: Peril Of Africa