Good evening to everyone.
Tomorrow 28 September, 2020 is world rabies day. Therefore, The Government of The Gambia through the Ministry of Agriculture and The Department of Livestock Services with its partners would like to commemorate the date with this special message and free rabies vaccination of dogs at the regional Livestock Directorate in Brikama will be conducted on Monday 28th September 2020
It gives me great honor and pleasure to extend to you all a very warm greeting. My Ministry through the Department of Livestock Services would like to commemorate and celebrate WORLD RABIES DAY 2020, the theme of which is: “END RABIES: COLLABORATE, VACCINATE”. Every 28 September is World Rabies Day, celebrated annually to raise awareness about rabies prevention and to highlight progress in fighting this deadly disease.
For Rabies, one of the deadliest zoonoses in the world, the figures speak for themselves. Globally 59,000 people die from the disease every year, most of them children in rural areas. This simply means someone in the world dies from rabies every 9 minutes. More than 95% of cases in humans are the result of a bite from an infected dog. Almost 100% of human rabies cases are preventable. Rabies can be prevented and vaccinating the Canine (dog) population is the solution
Vaccinating dogs against rabies is now recognized as the best way in which the animal-to-human transmission cycle can truly be interrupted. Therefore by vaccinating at least 70% of dogs, we can eliminate almost all cases of human rabies.
It is indeed ONE WORLD AND ONE HEALTH and therefore I would like to say how grateful I am to the collaborating partners of Department of Livestock Services, especially the Ministry of Health, AU-IBAR, WALIC, the GVC and GVMA, Gambia Tourism Board, Animal Welfare Groups like: Gambia Horse and Donkey Trust and GambiCat, and Private Veterinarians for their support. This will come along away in completing our national endeavor of a Rabies free Gambia. The theme for this year’s says it all END RABIES: COLLABORATE, VACCINATE.
It is also important to highlight in this one health approach, the current challenges posed by COVID19 Pandemic around the world and in The Gambia. Dead from Rabies is horrifying therefore the Ministry of Agriculture, through its technical department responsible for veterinary services is committed to The Global Strategic Plan to Prevent Human Deaths from Dog-transmitted Rabies by 2030.
Once again, I am greatly delighted by the efforts of the DLS and partners and the entire Gambian community, especially those living in the Greater Banjul Area and rural growth centres and the tourism development areas for their participation in Rabies vaccination initiatives.
We are very proud of all Gambians that have vaccinated their dogs against rabies in 2020 and we are urging the rest to do so.
Please be part of the OIE ‘Rabies Ends Here’ campaign adopted by The Gambia. Please take pride in having a dog vaccinated against rabies.
I thank you all for your attention.