KUCHING, Nov 11: State Disaster Management Committee chairman Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas reiterated that no live bullets have been or will be used in anti-rabies operations in the state.
He said that using live bullets is not an option and no guns have been fired except for transquiliser guns, and there is no need for the public in Miri and Limbang to believe otherwise.
The eighth phase of operations started today in Miri and Limbang and will last until November 20, .
“I am referring to posts on social media where irresponsible person(s) are alleging otherwise. Do not believe them or be unnecessarily alarmed.
“Those armed police and the army personnel accompanying the operation teams are just providing security coverage for them,” he disclosed in a statement today to refute the allegations.
He added that rabies is a deadly disease and that Sarawak has so far recorded a total of 21 fatalities since the outbreak in 2017.
Uggah also called on dog owners in the two divisions to give their fullest support.
“Our anti-rabies operation or Ops Rabies is to vaccinate dogs with owners in Miri and Limbang and the strays will targeted for removal,” he added.
Meanwhile, state Veterinary Services Department director Dr Adrian Susin, the sweeping teams and department personnel have successfully carried out mass and house-to-house vaccinations during Ops Rabies starting from March 1 this year, beginning from Lundu to Bintulu.
According to Adrian, a total of 25,834 dogs were vaccinated while 8,863 were removed. The current operation will cover the remaining Miri and Limbang Divisions.
“Our aim is to vaccinate 70 per cent of the estimated 205,000 dog population statewide in order to provide good herd immunity.
“This too will allow us to effectively stop the further spread of rabies among the dog population, thus preventing enzootic transmission to human,” said Adrain.
He revealed that to-date, some 149,003 dogs or 68 per cent statewide have been vaccinated. — DayakDaily