Penampang latest Sabah district with ASF outbreak

KOTA KINABALU: Penampang has been declared as an African Swine Fever (ASF) outbreak district - the 20th district in Sabah to be declared as one.

Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Dr Jeffrey Kitingan (pic) said the virus was first detected on Dec 14, 2021, and has spread to five villages in Inobong, Sugud and Koidupan areas within the Penampang district close to the city here.

“The cases involved a total of 229 backyard pigs owned by six different owners. The loss is estimated to be around RM115,000,” he said in a statement here on Thursday (Jan 20).

Kitingan, who is also the state Agriculture and Fisheries Minister, said Penampang has two commercial pig farms with around 2,900 pigs.

He said in order to prevent the virus from spreading to nearby districts, his ministry through the Department of Veterinary Services (DVS) would conduct awareness campaigns in the Penampang district to ensure that the people were well-informed about ASF.

The department will also monitor and control the movement of pigs and pork products to ensure that none leave Penampang for the time being.

He said only pigs from unaffected farms can be sent to the abattoir in Inanam here.

Since the ASF outbreak was first declared last year, 10 districts have been declared ASF-free after having zero cases after 60 days from the last reported case.

The districts declared ASF-free were Kota Marudu, Pitas, Sandakan, Kinabatangan, Beluran, Telupid, Tongod, Tawau, Lahad Datu, and Semporna.

“The government is aware of the people’s anxiety particularly as the Chinese New Year is just around the corner. However, we remain optimistic that pork supply in Sabah will be sufficient to meet the demand,” Kitingan said.

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