MP for Wairarapa, Alastair Scott is encouraging farmers within the Wairarapa electorate to attend this week’s Ministry of Primary Industries meeting in Pahiatua.

“Following last week’s confirmation a farm near Pahiatua has been infected with the cattle disease Mycoplasma Bovis, MPI has confirmed it will be holding a public information meeting on Thursday.

“I’d encourage as many people as possible to take this opportunity to ask questions of MPI, particularly around preventative and containment measures, signs of the infection to look out for, next steps and - perhaps most importantly - compensation options and how to apply for it.

“MPI officials told MPs at Parliament last week they are resourced to sit down with farmers and guide them through the process and, again, I’d encourage farmers to take that opportunity.

“The line Jacinda Ardern and Damien O’Connor are running that MPI has been under resourced is patently untrue. The Chief Operating Officer himself has said publicly that MPI was more than prepared for an incursion of this scale.

“Expert advice is to limit livestock movements and ensure boundary fences are secure.  It’s important that everyone maintains up-to-date NAIT and animal movement records. People working between properties need to clean their boots and farm equipment.

“I, like everyone else, want Damien O’Connor to hurry up and make a decision about the next steps. Farmers need clarity around whether the Government will fund a response for full eradication or whether the industry will need to transition towards long term management of the disease,” Mr Scott says.

The MPI meeting will be held at the St Peter’s Anglican Church hall at 2pm.

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