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Four Uganda beef processing plants in the offing to improve quality

Friday, 5th August, 2011

FOUR Uganda beef processing plants will be constructed across the country to improve the quality of meat on the market, animal industry ministry officials have said.

The move is also intended to stop animal brutality during transportation to slaughter houses across the country.

The industries will be built under the public-private sector partnership programme in Soroti, Mbarara, Nakaseke and Mpigi districts, Bright Rwamirama, the animal industry state minister said.

He was appearing before the parliamentary committee on agriculture on Tuesday, where he and other agriculture ministers were defending the ministry’s policy statement.

The issue of cruelty to animals was raised by former Vice-President Gilbert Bukenya, who condemned the deplorable state in which animals, especially cattle, were transported to Kampala for slaughter.

Bukenya noted that the ministry of agriculture, which knows the value of animals, had left them to suffer at the hands of cruel transporters.

He also decried the unhygienic conditions in abattoirs in the country, saying Ugandans were eating unsafe meat as a result.

“The conditions in the abattoirs are very bad, with people walking over carcasses,” Bukenya noted. He said some cattle often had their heads twisted, tails and other body parts tied up in a crooked manner.

He described the the treatment of animals in Uganda as absurd. “How can we in the 21st century hit pigs with hammers on the head?” he wondered.

But Rwamirama blamed the cruelty to the lack of a veterinary Police unit that would be responsible to check such malpractices.

By Catherine Bekunda: The New Vision Newspaper

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