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More than 20,000 chickens to be culled, villagers to be given briefing tomorrow

Tangau at the press conference. SNT Pix

KOTA KINABALU: More than 20,000 chickens from two farms in Kampung Kauluan, Tamparuli in Tuaran district are being culled beginning today, one day after it was declared as a bird flu outbreak district.

The figure does not include those belonging to the villagers as the Veterinary Services Department (DVS) is also conducting culling operations at nearby areas.

The birds would first be killed either by using poisonous gas or breaking the neck before its carcass is buried.

A briefing for the community leaders, particularly from villagers inside the five kilometre radius area would also be held tomorrow at 2pm by the DVs and Health Department at the Tuaran Pertubuhan Peladang meeting room in Berungis.

Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Wilfred Madius Tangau who is also Member of Parliament for Tuaran initiated the briefing as he was concerned with the situation.

“The people, especially those living within five kilometre radius of the outbreak area must be given accurate information and not to believe whatever they see in the social media,” said Tangau today.

He had earlier asked to be given a briefing by the DVS and Health Department on the situation.

Based on the briefing, there was no evidence of the bird flu virus have transferred to humans and infect people in the affected area. However, the Health Department cautioned the public to refrain from touching any carcass of dead bird that they stumbled upon.

To a question, DVS Director, Dr Haron Abas the chicken at the farm in Kauluan might have been infected by migratory birds that came to the area.

Dr Haron Abas. SNT pix

He said the sample with the virus strain had already been sent to the department’s research institute in Semenanjung, which is also responsible to make the announcement of the virus strain type.

On whether the government would be offering compensation to the chickens and poultry owners, he said he leaves the matter to the Minister of Agriculture and Food Industry Minister, Junz Wong.

Meanwhile, Tangau believed the current development would not affect the World Indigenous People Day celebration scheduled for Aug 8 – 9 in Kiulu.

However, he said the lucky visitor prizes that included poultry as one of the main prizes would have to be changed . The first and second prize is a buffalo and goat, respectively.-SabahNewsToday

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