Published Date: 2008-09-03 22:00:32
Subject: PRO/AH> Peste des petits ruminants - Kenya, Uganda
Archive Number: 20080903.2762
PESTE DES PETITS RUMINANTS - KENYA, UGANDA
A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases
Date: Mon 18 Aug 2008
Source: FEWSNET via Reuters alertnet [edited]
PPR livestock disease in Kenya and Uganda worsening food insecurity,
threatens to spread
Peste des petits ruminants (PPR), a virulent disease affecting sheep
and goats, continues to spread across pastoral and agropastoral areas
of north western Kenya and north eastern Uganda. The disease, 1st
reported in these areas in 2006 and 2007, respectively, is highly
contagious and frequently fatal. As a result, it is exacerbating the
already high levels of food insecurity in these areas due to the loss
of food and income that small ruminants provide.
While endemic in Ethiopia and some parts of Southern Sudan, and
reported in Somalia, its rapid spread in Kenya and Uganda warrant
immediate control measures. Despite attempts by governments, as well
as the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), African Union's
Interafrican Bureau for Animal Resources (AU/IBAR), NGOs, and other
partners, to control the disease through vaccinations and increased
awareness, the response to date has been insufficient and
ineffective. Additional resources must be deployed immediately to
increase surveillance, prevention, and control measures.
Date: Tue 5 Aug 2008
Source: Irin News [edited]
Pastoralist livelihoods hurt by disease
Pastoralists in northern Kenya have said their livelihoods have been
seriously affected by a viral disease that has killed 2.7 million
goats and sheep in the past 2 years. PPR had spread fast due a
shortage of vaccines, Kenya's livestock development minister Mohamed
Kuti said. Lack of adequate skilled personnel and funding had
"The ministry, with the support of FAO, has managed to obtain 2.6
million vaccines, yet we require 15 million to vaccinate the entire
sheep and goat population in the affected areas," Kuti said. "We
require technical personnel to be involved in the exercise that is
expected to cover the entire northern Kenya region; it is expansive
and expensive," he told IRIN.
The situation has been compounded by a sharp drop in the price of
livestock products, cancelled local and international orders and high
veterinary costs. "So far, the number of sheep and goats that have
died since the viral disease was detected in Turkana [district] in
June 2006 stands at 2.7 million," Kuti told IRIN.
A quarantine has been imposed in affected areas and markets closed.
However, enforcing the ban on the movement of animals was challenging
as pastoralists were constantly on the move due to the prevailing
drought. However, the Kenya Livestock Market Council (KLMC) said the
government had taken too long to deal with the disease, saying many
families had become desperate after losing all their animals.
"Our local traders and producers from the affected areas have been
locked out of the market in Kenya and abroad; market prices have also
fallen drastically as a result," KLMC chief executive officer, Abass
Sheikh Mohamed, said.
Mohamed said the disease had thwarted plans by traders from
Northeastern and parts of Rift Valley provinces to export animals.
"We had an order for more than a half a million goats and sheep to be
exported to the Arab world before the end of the year but we cannot
make it because of the poor health standards," he said. He urged the
government to declare the disease a crisis and seek international aid.
Mohamed Abdille, who runs a butchery at Modogashe, a remote trading
centre along the Isiolo-Garissa border, said he recently bought 15
goats for his business. "I almost cried when I saw the goats dying in
less than 2 days. The only veterinary officer at the division was
away and when he came back he told me that the goats died as a result
of the disease," Abdille, a retired teacher, said. "At the moment I
have more than 80 goats but we are spending a lot of money to buy
veterinary drugs," he added.
Another farmer, Salan Fatulle, who has lost more than 45 goats in the
same area, said his animals had survived severe drought in 2007 and
had helped provide milk for his family of 3 children. "Now I am only
left with 3 goats. The government must help me with relief food and
to buy school uniforms for my 2 children in school," Fatulle said.
[PPR (peste des petit ruminants; also known as kata,
pseudorinderpest, and stomatitis-pneumoenteritis complex) is an acute
contagious disease caused by a morbillivirus in the family
_Paramyxoviridae_, antigenically very similar to the rinderpest
virus. It affects small ruminants and occasionally wild animals. PPR
causes considerable economic losses, with mortality -- particularly
in goats -- sometimes exceeding 50 per cent in infected flocks. The
clinical disease, which resembles rinderpest in cattle, is usually
acute, characterised by severe pyrexia (which can last for 3-5 days),
serous ocular and nasal discharges, erosive mouth lesions, and
diarrhoea; but unlike rinderpest, pneumonia is a part of the
syndrome. At necropsy, characteristic zebra markings may occur in the
large intestine, but are not a consistent finding. Lesions also occur
in the lungs showing congestion or bronchopneumonia when associated
with bacterial infection.
The disease must be differentiated from rinderpest, bluetongue, foot
and mouth disease, and other exanthemous conditions as well as
gastroenteric conditions caused by bacteria (such as, salmonellosis)
PPR occurs in countries in Africa lying between the Equator and the
Sahara including countries of the Horn of Africa; since the late
1980s, the disease has spread to the Arabian Peninsula, throughout
most of the Middle Eastern countries, and eastwards. Outbreaks of PPR
are now known to be common in India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan,
Afghanistan, and China (Tibet). For the timeliness of the OIE (Office
International des Epizooties; World Organisation for Animal Health)
member countries who have officially reported PPR during the period
Jan 2005 - Jun 2008, see
The said timeline, however, is incomplete; several infected
countries, such as Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, and others are listed under
"Disease not reported during this report period." A survey in Syria
has shown the existence of PPR infection. Lebanon reported the
disease "suspected but not confirmed" during the 1st semester of 2008.
Though occasionally infected, wildlife does not seem to play a
significant role in the epidemiology of PPR; the disease does not
Kenya reported to the OIE its 1st outbreak of PPR in January 2007.
According to the said report, the disease had started on 3 Aug 2006
and was confirmed on 17 Aug 2006. See the report in ProMED-mail
posting: Peste des petits ruminants - Kenya (Rift Valley): OIE
A map illustrating the spread of PPR in parts of East Africa since
2005 is available at the URL of item 1 above.
For more background on PPR, its diagnostic methods, and vaccine
requirements, subscribers are referred to chapter 2.7.11 in the new,
2008 edition of OIE's Manual of Diagnostic Tests and Vaccines for
Terrestrial Animals, available at