Home News General Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development recognises increased capacity of Laboratoire Central Vétérinaire (LCV), Kinshasa, DRC.

Laboratoire Central Veterinaire speech in DRC Nov 2012 cropped

The vaccine production capacity of the Laboratoire Central Vétérinaire (LCV), Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo has been officially recognised by His Excellency Mr. Vahamwiti Mukesyayira, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development.

The LCV received support through the VACNADA programme (Vaccines for the Control of Neglected Animal Diseases in Africa) to enable the laboratory to begin full-scale production of Newcastle Disease (ND) vaccine. In addition to provision of technical assistance for production of the I-2 strain of the ND vaccine and supply of its master seed, equipment and a series of refurbishments, the LCV benefitted from a comprehensive programme of operational support, which consisted of expert training on vaccine production, quality assurance and operations management.

Acknowledging, in his opening address, the positive impact of the VACNADA project and paying tribute to the LCV’s leadership and staff in his opening address, the Minister toured the facility, cutting the ribbon to the lyophiliser room and the newly constructed incinerator house. Accompanied by the LCV’s Director, Dr. Leopold Mulumba; GALVmed’s Director of Operations, Dr. Meritxell Donadeu, the Minister saw the lyophiliser and other new equipment, including the refrigerated centrifuge, safety cabinets, incubator and other essential vaccine manufacturing apparatus. The absence of a lyophiliser had been identified by the VACNADA programme as a key bottleneck. The VACNADA project also helped to inspire the LCV to improve the documentation of standard operating procedures, produce reagent and equipment inventories and put in place procedures to enable closer maintenance of all equipment.

The €20 million VACNADA project, funded by the European Union Food Facility had  overall coordination of the implementing partners by AU-IBAR.  VACNADA was an intervention that sought to enhance food security through reducing the impact of animal disease by increasing access to and use of quality assured vaccines. GALVmed led the implementation of a component to improve the capacity of selected African laboratories to make quality assured vaccines in more efficient ways that meet internationally recognised quality standards and best practices.

Commenting on the opening event the LCV’s Director, Leopold Mulumba said:

We are honoured that the Minister took time to inaugurate our new institution and demonstrated such enthusiasm for the capabilities of the lab and our recent progress with the support of VACNADA and GALVmed. We truly appreciate the VACNADA programme which provided essential specialist equipment, refurbished the fabric of important facilities and delivered valuable training and insights. I know that our team has been inspired, not least because this process has enabled us to reflect on our own skills and expertise, today with increased capacity as a key African laboratory.

GALVmed’s Director of Operations, Meritxell Donadeu commented:

This was an occasion of genuine celebration and I was struck by the Minister’s evident support for the great strides that this lab in the DRC has made. There is a clear sense of commitment to quality assurance in Kinshasa’s Laboratoire Central Vétérinaire and Dr. Mulumba and his team are to be commended on making the most of the opportunities that the VACNADA programme provided. The increased efficiency and productivity gains that the LCV is evidencing will be critical in producing the I-2 Newcastle disease vaccine, but also going forward in the creation of other products essential to the health of livestock upon which so many millions of people depend for their livelihoods.