Tuesday, February 21, 2006

No to Fowl Play (4)

Well, there’s the frightening avian flu right again at our doorstep. Not surprising as birds carrying the deadly H5N1 virus do fly around a fair bit. They all over – apart from the previously exposed countries like Vietnam, Thailand, Hong Kong, etc the flu has been spotted in India, France, Nigeria, Turkey, etc, and now Malaysia. In Gombak 40 possibly tainted birds had been culled. Well done for that!

I won’t comment much other than to direct readers to my previous postings on subject:

14 Oct 2004 -
No to Fowl Play
24 Nov 2004 -
No to Fowl Play (2)!
18 Dec 2004 -
No to Fowl Play (3)
23 Dec 2004 -
The Pig on Noah's Ark

Reading again through my postings at BolehTalk, I did express my concerns over the lack of discipline by some people in persistently smuggling fowls across the Thai-Malaysian border. Officials suspected that the case in Gombak could well be such a case. Let’s hope our relevant ministries can educate the public on the importance of strict quarantine in the current adverse situation.

In the last of the above postings
The Pig on Noah's Ark, blogger Aisehman argued that Malaysia should rid itself completely of pigs as the animal presents itself as a dangerous health hazard. I blogged his opinions as:

"He quoted international health officials on an imminent pandemic – a possible hybrid strain of avian influenza and human flu virus, with Asia as its likely epicentre. This pandemic may be even worse than SARs. He mentioned WHO raising the possibility that bird flu could mix with a virus carried by pigs, and give rise to another mutated and deadlier progeny."

My response to his concerns:

"My belief is that if we select pigs to purge completely from Malaysia, on the basis of viral danger to health, then what should we do about the current problem of Avian Flu? This is the imminent danger rather than pigs. Does that mean we should also cull all types of fowls (and eggs), and ban Malaysians from indulging in their hobbies of keeping merbok, merpati and various other birds as pets? The problem with the culling-elimination approach is that we will never ever see a satisfactory conclusion, even if we may end up shooting every bird that dares fly over Peninsula Malaysia, Sarawak and Sabah."

I have added bold-ing and underlining to one sentence. I believe I have been vindicated.

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