Restrictions Announced - African Horse Sickness
The Chief Director of Veterinary Services in the Western Cape, Dr. G. Msiza has announced that restrictions have been placed on all direct horse movements to the Western Cape African Horse Sickness (AHS) Control Area from all other provinces, with immediate effect.
These restrictions have been instituted due to the increasing number of reported and suspicious cases of AHS in the rest of South Africa. Thus far this season we have already had 34 confirmed or suspect cases of which 22 have died. Due to persistent high rainfall in the rest of the country the numbers of cases has increased dramatically and are also occurring earlier than in previous years.
Horse owners are thus strongly discouraged from attempting to move horses from anywhere in the Infected Zone into the Western Cape African Horse Sickness Controlled Area as the risk of transmitting the disease is increasing daily. An outbreak in the AHS Controlled Area can potentially result in the death of many local horses as well as place our export status in jeopardy again, possibly leading to a further 2 year ban by the European Union and causing major financial and horse losses to the equine industry as a whole.
This notice is issued in accordance with the Animal Diseases Act 35 of 1984, Section 20 (c) (ii) and Section 26 (1) (a) and (b).
The Western Cape Government erected African Horse Sickness signage boards on all major access routes into the Western Cape Province, reminding road users they are entering an African Horse Sickness Free Area. The Provincial Traffic Authorities are working together with Department of Agriculture officials in monitoring the movement of horses into the Western Cape.
Your co-operation in assisting us to implement the movements controls as mentioned below, and thus potentially to prevent an outbreak of AHS in the Western Cape AHS Controlled Area is greatly appreciated.