Movement of pigs, pig products banned in Central Region over swine flu Scare

The Veterinary Services Directorate in the Central Regional has placed a ban on the movement of pigs and pig products within the region.

The movement of same out of the region is to be stopped till further notice, the Directorate has noted.

The directive is to help manage and control the Africa Swine Fever disease (A.S.F) which has reportedly been recorded in some parts of the country in recent times.

Dr. Felicity Gyang Toninga, the Central Regional Veterinary Officer in a statement called for the public to observe the directive and support her outfit to manage the situation which is spreading in the region.

Currently, no known vaccine exists to combat the virus that is transmitted through direct contact with other animals such as wild boars.

Reports say over 6,000 pigs were killed when the disease hit the Ashanti Region. Some pig farmers in some parts of the Brong Ahafo Region were also affected when thousands of infected pigs were killed.

As a special delicacy in Ghana, the sellers of pork in areas where pigs have been infected will suffer the consequences of the directive.

About African Swine Fever Virus

African swine fever virus (ASFV) is the causative agent of African swine fever (ASF). The virus causes a haemorrhagic fever with high mortality rates in pigs, but persistently infects its natural hosts, warthogs, bushpigs, and soft ticks of the genus Ornithodoros, with no disease signs.

ASFV is a large, double-stranded DNA virus which replicates in the cytoplasm of infected cells.[2] ASFV infects domestic pigs, warthogs and bushpigs, as well as soft ticks (Ornithodoros), which likely act as a vector.

ASFV is the only known virus with a double-stranded DNA genome transmitted by arthropods. The virus causes a lethal haemorraghic disease in domestic pigs. Some isolates can cause death of animals as quickly as a week after infection.

The acute form of the disease caused by highly virulent strains, pigs may develop a high fever, but show no other noticeable symptoms for the first few days They then gradually lose their appetites and become depressed.

In white-skinned pigs, the extremities turn blueish-purple and hemorrhages become apparent on the ears and abdomen. Groups of infected pigs lie huddled together shivering, breathing abnormally, and sometimes coughing. If forced to stand, they appear unsteady on their legs. Within a few days of infection, they enter a comatose state and then die. In pregnant sows, spontaneous abortions occur. In milder infections, affected pigs lose weight, becoming thin, and develop signs of pneumonia, skin ulcers, and swollen joints.


Source: Ghana/