Kilifi County Government has closed down slaughterhouses and banned supply of red meat following an outbreak of Rift Valley Fever.
Authorities said they made the resolutions after veterinary officers got positive tests of the disease which is spread by mosquitoes in Malindi and Magarini.
Rift Valley fever was first reported in Tanariver County and there are fears it could endanger lives of residents who mostly consume meat from animals driven from the neighboring county.
Already the government slaughterhouse in Malindi and all other private slaughterhouses were closed down indefinitely to prevent spread of the disease.
Kilifi County Excecutive Member of health Dr. Omar Anisa said they are on high alert and advised residents not to consume meat as it could endanger lives of people.
“Majority of the livestock are from Tanariver and North eastern provide , I urge the deputy County Commissioner and his security team to be on the lookout as there are many animals who enter the county ,’’ she said.
Speaking during the official handover of a new hospital built by Krystaline salt firm company in Marereni Dr. Anisa said currently the security organs and the department concerned would be on the lookout for livestock as Muslims are expected to celebrate Idd later this month.
She called on the veterinary department, health, Security and environment to work together to avoid the spread of the disease as it could affect the tourism sector.
“Malindi is a tourism area , its sensitive matter I have already written a letter to the Italian consulate to assure him that everything is under control,’’ she said.
Dr. Anisa said the county government has initiated plans to engage investors to build an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) in Malindi Sub County to address complicated ailments for patients and reduce referrals to Mombasa County.
She said Department of health receives more than Sh.2.6 billion allocation in the budget but it’s not enough since the health wage bill annually amounts to over Sh.2.2 billion.
“Funding from the National government can and will never be enough to serve the people of Kilifi,’’ she said.
The health CEC said Magarini has so many salt firms who together can partner with the county government to construct the ICU in Malindi a level four hospital to deal with complicated cases.
Dinesh Shikotra the General Manager of Kay Salt Company who built the dispensary as part of their corporate social responsibility through the Chairman K. K Patel’s blessings said their aim was to set up a modern health facility.
Also present was the Deputy Speaker of County assembly and Adu Ward MCA Stanley Kenga, nominated MCA Loice Ngari among other local leaders.