Query: MISLEADING HEADLINE IN INFORMANTÉ, 27 OCTOBER–02 NOVEMBER 2016
The Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry would hereby like to inform the Namibian public that the above mentioned headline titled: ‘STATE VET HID OKAPUKA RESULTS’ is factually untrue and seems to have been made solely for the purpose of sensationalism.
Response: The ministry would like to assure the public that all relevant information regarding the Okapuka feedlot (including the various expert opinions) had been shared with the assigned authorities from the MEATCO Board, which was used to derive the solution to the problem.
The editor of the Informanté newspaper was contacted to reveal which results were hidden and from whom such results were hidden, but failed to do so, hence the need for this clarification.
The article further ventures into explanations of fungal contamination versus feed contamination and appears to suggest these are mutually exclusive. That is highly misleading, as the fungus actually contaminates feed, which in turn produces the toxin zearalonone, which when consumed by animals through contaminated feed, is converted to the various metabolites, including zeranol, talarenol, alpha and beta zearalenol.
We herewith urge the media, particularly the Informanté newspaper to maintain high journalistic standards and to report factually and responsibly at all times.
* Margaret Kalo, senior public relations officer in the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org