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Importers put Kenya at risk

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  • Importers put Kenya at risk

    <TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 width="98%" align=right border=0><TBODY><TR><TD vAlign=top>Kenya exposed to bird flu risk by poultry importers <HR color=#e78e84></TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top>By Elizabeth Awuor
    Importation of cheap poultry products from countries where the avian influenza has been reported poses a risk of introducing bird flu into Kenya, a workshop was told.
    Coast province Director of Veterinary Services, Dr George Makalo, said some traders still import poultry products from countries that the Government has already banned.
    "Perhaps some traders want to maximise their profits by buying products from countries where bird flu has been detected without realising the risks they are exposing the country to," said Makalo.
    He said Kenya’s geographical location places poultry at higher risk due to migratory birds that stop over on their way to Southern Africa. "We need to be ready day and night because we do not know when the disease will strike," he said.
    The assistant director of Veterinary Services, Dr Catherine Wanjohi, blamed the media for blowing bird flu issue out of proportion. "We insist that there is no bird flu in Kenya even though cases have bee reported in neighbouring countries, and the media should not cause public panic like it did last year," Wanjohi said.
    She revealed that Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) fund the countrywide sensitisation project at a cost of approximately Sh118 million.
    "We intend to include as many customs officers as possible in the sensitisation programme because trade is the major risk of introduction of avian influenza into the country," said Wanjohi.
    The three-day workshop held at the Sai Rock hotel in Mombasa saw stakeholders acquire skills on detection, prevention and control of bird flu. http://www.eastandard.net/hm_news/ne...eid=1143967663
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