“Uganda to Adopt Cuban Technology Against Ticks Borne Diseases” – President Museveni

Saturday, 1st July 2017
President Yoweri Museveni has said that the control of tick infestations and transmission of tick borne diseases remains a challenge for the cattle industry in Uganda. He observed that the traditional control methods have only been partially successful as the parasites continue to cause significant loses to the cattle industry and as such the Government of Uganda has decided to adopt the Cuban scientific technology of production of vaccines to control the viral, bacterial and the multicellular pathogens in animals.

The President was speaking during a meeting between the Government of Uganda delegation, led by State Minister for Animal Industry, Hon. Joy Kabatsi and a visiting group from the Cuban Centre for Genetic Engineering represented by Dr. C. Jesus Mena Campos who was accompanied by Dr. Hector Luis Machado Morales and Dr. Marisela Saurez Pedroso.

The meeting took place yesterday at the President’s country farm in Kisozi, Gomba district. The Uganda delegation also included officials from the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, the National Agricultural Research Organization (NARO) and Makerere University.

The meeting agreed on collaboration in the pre-registration evaluation and adaptation of the Cuban technology for domestic production of the vaccines against ticks and tick borne diseases and the capacity development of the technology for the local production of livestock vaccines together with integrated tick and tick borne disease control in Uganda.

President Museveni said Uganda and Cuba would form a joint venture company for production of the vaccines against ticks so that production and sale of the vaccines is done in Uganda.

“Let us form a joint venture company so that we can produce these vaccines from Uganda and sell them from here," he said.  He also said the adaptation of this scientific technology will improve the economics and the welfare of the animals in Uganda.

Mr. Museveni pledged support to funding the anti-tick vaccine research collaboration, facilitating Uganda scientists to participate in biotechnology interfaces in Cuba as well as funding the establishment and operationalization of a plant to produce veterinary vaccines.

The leader of the Cuban delegation, Dr. C. Jesus Mena Campos, said that ticks could be controlled to the level of rendering them to be ineffective although they cannot be completely eliminated. He further explained that ticks, on the other hand, constitute a cost free provocation that keep boosting the immunity system of animals.

Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries Permanent Secretary, Mr. Pius Kasajja Wakabi and National Drug Authority Executive Director, Donna Tukashemererwa, attended the meeting.