The Bibiani Ahnwiaso Bekwai Municipal in the Western North region is experiencing outbreak of the highly pathogenic avian influenza or bird flu recently, it was made known to the MCE, HODs and the Municipal Assembly in a meeting by the municipal director of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) Mr. Augustine Amaning Kwarteng that, they have received report of abnormal death of poultry birds by some farmers in the municipality. He further disclosed that the MoFA and the Environmental health team has monitored the situation and confirmed it is avian influenza or bird flu.
Steps taken by the Municipality.
Under the supervision of the MCE Hon. Alfred Amoah a fifteen-member committee was set up to deal with the situation at hand. The committee members consisted of workers from the following department.
• Central Administration
• Security Services
• Environmental Health
The MCE, who is the chairman of the committee, in further approaches in saving the bird flu outbreak (H5N1) invited the regional directors of the NADMO, MoFA, Veterinary officer and Security services to meet with the AVIAN INFLUENZA COMMITTEE for further briefing on the causes and prevention of the bird flu.
Avian Influenza Committee meeting with Poultry Farmers and the Media
Dr. Simon Gbene, the regional Veterinary Officer made it known that over 20,000 birds have been killed by avian influenza or bird flu outbreak within two weeks, from 13th August to 27th August 2021 in the Bibiani Anhwiaso Bekwai municipality in the Western North Region of Ghana this was confirmed by the municipal MoFA director, Mr. Augustine Amaning Kwarteng. He explained that the outbreak has affected six different farms in two weeks within the municipality and at a go the bird flu killed 8500 birds. Birds affected with the disease in the various farms with the help of the COMMITTEE have been depopulated.
He advised the farmers to double their steps as soon as possible to report any unfamiliar reaction or signs of the birds to any nearby Agric Office or any Veterinary Office for further checks and investigations.
Dr. Gbene also advise the farmers to report cases of bird flu early to the appropriate authority to help in further investigations about what exactly the problem is and when they become affected, they should open up for them to be kill to prevent further and future outbreak. Dr Gbene also disclosed that the H5N1 can also affect Humans, so farmers should be careful in this season of the bird flu outbreak to save their lives.
The MCE, Hon. Alfred Amoah also cautioned the general public and consumers to be extra careful about where to patronize fowls, eggs and should stay away from buying cheap birds from the market off late and poultry farmers should make no attempt to eat or sell any of the affected birds it’s against the law and who so ever does that does it in his own risk. He also entreated the Security Services to make sure poultry farmers do not sell affected birds and eggs to their consumers and also not to allow movement poultry birds in and out of the municipality.
He urged the NCCE, ISD and the Media to educate the general public on the outbreak of the pathogenic avian influenza (H5N1) and ensure that people who discuss the disease on the radio are well-informed so as not to create unnecessary panic in the public.
The MCE also pleaded with farmers who have not registered or joined the poultry farmers association should do so and urged the farmers to repay their financial support already given them to make way for others.
The chairman for the Poultry Farmers Association in the municipality Mr. Mohammed Amin Bawah pleaded with government of Ghana, NGOs and co-operate bodies like financial institutions to aid them in this season of the H5N1 or bird flu. He also applauded the MOFA and the Municipal Assembly for their support for Poultry Farmers in the municipality.