Manicaland records decrease in tick-borne disease

Martin Muleya

HEADLANDS-Manicaland province has recently recorded a significant drop in tick-born-related cases between February and March as Government intensifies the fight against January disease across the country.

Speaking on the sidelines of a field day held at Commissioner General Moses Chihobvu’s Goodhope farm in Headlands, Manicaland Provincial Veterinary Officer Dr Charles Guri explained that Manicaland experienced a late peak in the number of tick-borne related diseases due to the late onset of rains in most districts. 

However, cyclone Freddy-induced incessant rains saw a drastic rise in cases to an average of 245 being recorded per week across Manicaland. 
“We got a peak of tick-borne diseases peaking instead of January, rose in February and March due to the incessant rains in the province. Our highest in February was 242 cases, then in March, they peaked at 245. In late March, the province recorded an average of 20 cases a week,” said Dr Guri.

Manicaland is currently recording an average of 40 tick-borne-related cases a week. 
Guri added that the province had lost almost 1000 cattle to January disease this year.
The Chief Director of the Ministry of Agriculture, Resettlement, Water, Fisheries and Rural Development Professor, Obert Jiri, officiated the field day. He highlighted that as farmers readies for the next summer season, the Government targets two million hectares of maize harvest. 

“We are celebrating this field day as part of the fulfilment of the Government’s National Development Strategy1. As we go into the next farming season, we target two million hectares of maize yield. Our focus on winter and summer should be on productivity,” noted Prof Jiri.

Goodhope Farm has 70 hectares, 30 hectares is arable land, and 17 hectares is under maize with an expected eight tonnes per hectare.

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