Lungu gives Mswati buffaloes as wedding gift but they cause deadly disease in Swaziland

Lungu gives Mswati buffaloes as wedding gift but they cause deadly disease in Swaziland

Edgar Lungu has stolen three buffaloes from Luangwa national Park and given them to his fellow dictator King Mswati of Swaziland as a wedding gift. But the buffaloes have caused a deadly disease in Swazind leading to the European Union to ban meat imports from the impoverished kingdom.

Polygamous Mswati recently married his 14th wife, a 19-year year old kid, and Lungu was his guest of honour.

What was not known was that Lungu had, ahead of the wedding, sent Mswati three buffaloes stolen from Luangwa National Park. Lungu does not own any private game park and he certainly owns no buffaloes so whatever he gave is stolen from national parls

Swazi Media report that European Union has banned beef imports from Swaziland following a foot-and-mouth disease outbreak caused by three buffaloes donated to the country by Zambian President Edgar Lungu early this month

Swaziland’s Agriculture Minister Moses Vilakati confirmed the suspension in a statement on Tuesday.

“When the buffalos arrived into the country they were accompanied by documents certifying that they had tested negative for the disease,” Vilakati said.

The minister however said the Swazi government is taking precautionary measures “and we have since taken their blood samples for further tests to be conducted in South Africa where we seek to confirm the initial test results.”

The buffaloes are being kept under quarantine in Malindza in the Lubombo region of Swaziland.

The minister said all animals that utilise dip tanks located within a radius of 10 kilometres from where the buffalos are have been quarantined too.

Swaziland Meat Industries, the country’s major beef exporter, has meanwhile suspended all cattle purchases from farmers and the payments of export bonuses until further notice.

 

Vilakati said the embargo is expected to affect local beef farmers in a big way.

In 2001 the EU placed a three-month ban on all beef imports from Swaziland following the kingdom’s failure to contain an outbreak of the same disease.

The Zambian president has been King Mswati III’s guest twice in a period of three months as he came here in June and in August 2017 where he participated in the International Trade Fair and the annual Reed Dance ceremony.

The buffalos arrived in Swaziland on September 3.

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