Like many countries in southern Africa, rabies is endemic in Lesotho, where it causes mortality in dogs and occasionally affects people. The government is committed towards elimination of dog mediated rabies by 2030. Therefore, in May 2019, Dr Gerard Relebohile Mahloane, the OIE Delegate, made a request to Director General of OIE for rabies vaccine to commence massive vaccination of dogs and cats, to prevent, control and eradicate dog mediated rabies. In response, the OIE donated 50,000 doses of rabies vaccine, which was procured through OIE Vaccine Bank with funding support from the European Union (EU). The vaccine was handed over to the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security of the Kingdom of Lesotho by the OIE Rabies Programme Officer in Gaborone, Dr. Tenzin Tenzin on the 31 July 2019.
The Minister confirmed the worrisome rabies situation in Lesotho, and hence then importance of prevention and control the disease, in line with the global goal of zero-human deaths due to dog mediated rabies by 2030. He commended the OIE for the generous offer, and that the vaccine will be utilised fully without any delay.
Group picture © Department of Livestock Services (DLS) 2019