Wed, 15 Jan 2003

City sets up team to monitor anthrax

The Jakarta Post, Jakarta

The city administration announced Tuesday it had set up a team to monitor a possible attack of anthrax, urging residents to be more alert about the disease following the recent anthrax outbreak in Bogor.

"We call on people to be cautious about anthrax infections," Governor Sutiyoso told reporters at City Hall.

He said he had ordered the City Husbandry, Agriculture and Forestry Agency to monitor cattle in the city ahead of Idul Adha (Islamic Day of Sacrifice) which will fall on Feb. 12.

At least seven people from Kedumanggu village, Bogor, have been infected with anthrax. The seven were believed to have contracted the disease after eating meat from a goat which carried the virus.

Bogor, besides other cities in West Java, Central Java and East Java, is a supplier of goats and cows for Jakarta.

Separately, head of the agency's program and monitoring division Bambang Basuki said the agency had set up a team consisting of agency officials and veterinarians from the Bogor Institute of Agriculture.

"We have inspected several traditional markets here which provide goats and cows, and have yet to find evidence of the virus," he said, adding that the team would intensify its monitoring two weeks before Idul Adha.