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WHO Animal donates 140,000 rabies vaccines to Angola

This Tuesday Angola received a donation from the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) of 140,000 doses of vaccines against animal rabies, to prevent the spread to Namibia of this disease that causes more than 1,000 deaths annually in the country.


In the symbolic ceremony of the delivery of vaccines, the pilot project for the Prevention, Control and Elimination of Rabies in Humans Transmitted by the dog, until 2030, in the South Region, in the provinces of Cuando Cubango, Cunene, Huíla and Namibe was also presented.

Speaking to the press, the representative of the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), Moetapele Letshwenyo, referred that Angola requested support for the supply of vaccines, a request that the organization welcomed, also providing technical assistance.

According to the official, the objective is to eliminate rabies by 2030, which "is possible", just by vaccinating animals.

“Annually, around 60 thousand people die of rabies in the world, mostly in Africa and Asia,” said Moetapele Letshwenyo, noting that the OIE supports 16 countries, six of which are endemic and a priority for the organization, Angola being one of them.

The director-general of the Veterinary Services Institute, Ditutala Simão, said that Angola annually registers more than a thousand fatal cases of rabies, which is a concern.

“OIE joins the efforts that the Government has been making to control rabies. We are not talking yet in terms of eradication, but in terms of rabies control ”, he stressed.

Ditutala Simão underlined that, in order to control the disease, the animal prophylaxis program is being applied to animals, taking into account that more than 60 percent of the diseases that affect humans come from animals and rabies is one of the cases.

The director-general of the Veterinary Services Institute stressed that, in northern Namibia, rabies has been eradicated, which is why Angola must control the disease in the provinces bordering that country.

“There is no longer rabies in humans, because they have intensified vaccination against rabies in animals. As we border Namibia - in four provinces - Huíla, Namibe, Cunene and Cuando Cubango - we will also reinforce vaccination campaigns in these four provinces ”, he said.

The official stressed that Angola, Namibia and Zambia have an agreement in the framework of the harmonization of sanitary prophylaxis measures, so if its partners have already made this effort at the border, the Portuguese-speaking country must also comply, under penalty of becoming a “reservoir of disease, which can move to another republic at any time ”.

According to Ditutala Simão, the Government annually imports more than 500 thousand doses of vaccines for the control of rabies, with costs around 200 million kwanzas.

Angola stopped producing vaccines during the war, continued the director-general of the Veterinary Services Institute, but work is being carried out to install a biotechnology center, through a financing line from Germany, to resume. this production.

“Rabies vaccines were already produced in Angola, in the province of Huambo, in the laboratories of the Veterinary Research Institute. Now we are working, we already have a laboratory in operation and since they are very touchy vaccines, we have had support from the OIE and international specialized laboratories”, he said.

"We are producing in smaller quantities, in addition to rabies vaccines, we also have other vaccines to control animal diseases," he added.

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