Ghanaian Minister of Food and Agriculture Ernest Debrah has reiterated that the bird flu was not in Ghana and there was, therefore, no need for the public to panic, Ghana News Agency reported on Wednesday.
He said on Tuesday that there was no record of the disease in Ghana, and the nation was adequately prepared to deal with the outbreak of the bird flu.
Speaking at the World Poultry Science Association (WPSA) seminar on bird flu for poultry farmers, scientists and journalists in the capital Accra, Debrah urged the media to be circumspect in their reportage so as not to evoke unnecessary fear in consumers of poultry products.
The detection of the bird flu in neighboring Burkina Faso had not reached Ghana and even if it was detected the country had put in enough safety measures to contain the disease.
Debrah urged poultry consumers not to be swayed by unnecessary sensationalism on the outbreak of the disease and asked the public "to continue to enjoy local poultry products."
An outbreak of bird flu could result in massive economic and social losses, he said, adding that the government had issued strict directives to all districts bordering Burkina Faso to be on the alert.
"If well established economies are having problems with the bird flu scare then poorer economies should take the disease very seriously," he said.
Minister Debrah called on the media as shapers of public opinion to take the lead role in the awareness campaign on the dangers posed by the disease and the country's preparedness to detect and contain it.
He said it was also necessary for scientists to demonstrate to the general public that the consumption of poultry products like eggs and chicken posed no threat to human health provided they were cooked at 70 degrees Celsius.
An egg and chicken fair was organized as part of the seminar to prove that locally produced eggs and chickens were safe.