South Africa has been declared free of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) and goat plague by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), the agriculture, forestry and fisheries department said on Tuesday.
This followed the 82nd general session of the OIE from May 25 to 30 in Paris, spokeswoman Makenosi Maroo said in a statement.
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South Africa was among the 48 countries, the first and only one in Africa, recognized as being goat plague (peste des petits ruminants, or PPR) free.
"The distribution of PPR has expanded throughout the past 10 years and it is now present over a large part of Africa, the Middle East and Asia," said Maroo. "Since PPR is a major devastating disease of small ruminants, it has been selected as one of the top priority diseases to be addressed by the OIE."
South Africa was aware of the significant risk goat plague posed to small stock like sheep, and the goats industry.
Also at the general session, the department's head of animal production and health, Botlhe Michael Modisane, who was elected as a member of the council two years ago, was nominated and elected as vice-president of the OIE council.
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