The unit’s National Co-ordinator, Senior Assistant Commissioner Erasmus Makodza, said they had an obligation to protect the national herd as espoused in the economic blueprint.
He said this while addressing more than 60 senior officers and Government officials during a ZRP and Veterinarians for Animal Welfare Zimbabwe (VAWZ) workshop on the prevention of cruelty to animals.
“May I bring to the attention of the participants the crucial role that the ZRP has to play in support of Government initiatives with particular reference to the Zim-Asset blueprint. The anti-stock section is seized with ensuring that the Zim-Asset Cluster on Food Security and Nutrition succeeds.
“It is our duty to ensure that livestock of whatever kind is protected and moreso we have an obligation to guarantee the growth of the national herd as espoused in the Zim-Asset blueprint,” he said.
“It therefore goes without saying that prevention of cruelty to animals is the first step. We are watchdogs and thus we should play this critical role with focus and direction.”
Snr Asst Comm Makodza said the workshop was in response to the high level of cruelty being perpetrated by humans on animals.
“Among other acts, we have witnessed mixing of different species of livestock in trucks. Cattle, goats, sheep and even birds are sometimes transported together. Some of the smaller species are injured or killed in the process,” he said.
He said the participants were going to focus on areas such as animal welfare, prevention of cruelty to animals, livestock transportation, impounding of stray animals, operations of abattoirs and transportation of meat and the role of VAWZ and ZRP in investigations and prevention of cruelty to animals, among others.
Snr Asst Comm Makodza urged VAWZ to continue partnering ZRP in the fight against such acts.
The unit’s staff officer, Chief Superintendent Andrew Phiri, said they had noted with concern that most farmers were using unsuitable vehicles when transporting livestock.
He urged them to use the correct vehicles during transportation and to abide by the law when moving animals.