Kyankwanzi District Veterinary Officer arrested over illegal operation

National Drug Authority's Dr Bernard Ssebwomu, addresses the press in Kyankwanzi District o Thursday (Photo: Gad Asaba)

The Kyankwanzi District Veterinary Officer (DVO), Dr Moses Achong, has been arrested for allegedly employing an unqualified worker in his animal drug shop.

Dr Achong was arrested on Thursday by the National Drug Authority (NDA) officials following a cattle farmers’ outcry that counterfeit animal drugs were on the market.

Responding to the outcry, the NDA officials mounted an operation in Mbaali market, Nsambya Sub-county in Kyankwanzi District where a senior six leaver, Augustine Ssematimba, was found selling veterinary drugs at Mbaali Farmers Contact Centre Veterinary Drug Shop without any qualification and a licence.

On interrogation, Ssematimba told the NDA officials that the drug shop belonged to the Kyankwanzi DVO, Dr Moses Achong.

Asked about the controversial drug shop, Dr Achong merely explained his role in having drug shops operational.

Audio: Achong on role (English)

This resulted in Ssematimba and Dr Achong’s arrest and detention at Kyankwanzi police station where a case file number CRB 145/24/2021 was opened against both defendants. The duo will be arraigned before the magistrate to defend themselves once investigations are complete, according to NDA.

Mr Godfrey Bashaba, one of the affected cattle farmers told the NDA officials that their animals become blind once such drugs are administered adding that even drugs against ticks are not effective despite being bought expensively.

Audio: Bashaba on fake drugs (Runyankole/Rukiga)
Some of the counterfeit animal drugs impounded in Kyankwanzi district. (Photo: Gad Asaba)

NDA’s Dr Bernard Ssebwomu said fake animal drugs contaminate milk and once consumed, one develops cancer. He also said after realising its non efficacy, farmers tend to pour such drugs into rivers killing fish or anywhere in the environment which can also lead loss of chicken.

Audio: Ssebwomu on counterfeit drugs (Luganda)

Dr Ssebwomu revealed that during NDA’s operations, it was observed that some people mix plant drugs with animal drugs which results in the death of animals. He vowed that operations will continue to rid the field of quack veterinarians.

Audio: Ssebwomu on operations (Luganda)

Mr Julius Sunday, the Nsambya Sub-county Chairman, said efforts to stop fake drug sales in the area were frustrated by the insistence of the quack veterinarians.

However, he hailed NDA for the intervention, being optimistic that the practice will be eliminated.

Audio: Sunday on fake drugs (Runyankole/Rukiga)


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