Veterinary legal reform in Tanzania

Veterinary legal reform in Tanzania

Animal health care reforms in Tanzania

The objective of this paper is to review the progress of government economic and legal reforms as far as they affect the provision of primary animal health care in rural areas of Tanzania. Lessons drawn from this review are used to suggest a way forward that will integrate primary health care delivery services in rural areas and facilitate economic development of underserved rural areas.

The discussion in this paper shows that the redefinition of private and public tasks and adequate regulatory framework in the provision of animal health services in rural areas in Tanzania is still ongoing. This implies that putting in place an adequate legal framework to manage and control effects of reforms is a function of many factors. The reform process itself poses three problems that must be solved in order to provide livestock owners in rural areas a secure living and guaranteed rural income:

  • how to create eficient livestock inputs (drugs) markets, which must go hand in hand with development of roles, capacity and regulatory framework of community-based animal health workers who are better adapted to work in rural areas
  • appreciation of the repercussions of economic reforms on the domestic economy of pastoralists, which could lead to initiating deliberate efforts of integrating them in the reform process
  • addressing, in a particular way, specific problems of weak productivity of livestock farming in pastoralist areas in order to enable them to fully cover the financing of desirable services, both for public and private good

The authors argue that:

  • efforts geared towards enhancing the capacity and regulatory framework of primary level animal health workers in Tanzania should be an integral part of the country’s poverty reduction strategy
  • livestock could be seen on the one hand as a means of alleviating poverty, and, on the other hand, as an economic activity to be supported because of the contribution it makes in meeting rapidly growing demand. However, the response to this demand can be assured by means other than rural development itself, e.g. without specific policies and implementation measures on primary animal health care, Tanzanian livestock development will tend to continuously become urban or peri-urban
  • the real stake of a rural development policy based on livestock farming thus must aim at integration of rural people and their impoverishment into the ongoing sectoral reform development process.
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