By Palma Ileye
Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr. Mohammad Mahmood Abubakar has said that the Ministry in collaboration with the Relevant Stakeholders has developed a Five Years National Control Strategic Plans, NCSP, to curtail the spread of Transboundary Diseases in the Livestock Sub Sector in Nigeria.
Abubakar added that the Plan would ensure improved animal production and productivity for sustainable Livestock Development in the Country.
The Minister made this known at the Flag-Off Ceremony of the 2022 Nationwide Mass Vaccination Campaign against Transboundary Animal Diseases for the North-Central Zone in Abuja.
He revealed that the Ministry had revalidated the Emergency Preparedness Plan for the Control of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza and reviewed the Animal Disease Control Act, 2022 which was signed by Mr. President.
The Agric Minister further stated that the Ministry in its efforts to curtail the spread of Transboundary Animal Diseases had procured 4,148,000 doses of CBPP vaccines, 15,479,500 doses of PPR vaccines, 2,000,000 doses of FMD vaccines and 3,000,000 doses of Newcastle Disease vaccines to be allocated to the 36 States of the Federation and FCT based on request.
Abubakar pointed out that over the years and in order to ensure effective coverage of the vaccination, the Ministry had supported all the states including FCT with veterinary Medicare inputs including vaccines and other consumables, veterinary infrastructure such as Primary Health Centers among others.
He therefore appealed to States to key into the exercise, take full ownership and sustain it in order to protect and preserve the critical livestock resources of the North Central Geopolitical Zone and the Country at large.
According to him, “with the country’s Livestock Population, estimated at 22,378,374 Cattle; 53,061,143 Sheep; 99,879,799 Goats; 9,299,563 Pigs and over 425,790,456 Poultry, livestock production remains a key means of livelihood in the country. Indeed, the sector provides gainful employment for about 70% of the population, especially the rural dwellers”.
He noted that, “the sector also provides several benefits, such as supply of animal protein, source of income and cash reserves for use in emergency and for fulfilment of cultural and religious obligations. In addition, the by-products from livestock, including hides and skin are used in the production of materials such as belts, shoes and bags while animal wastes serve as manure for crop production.”
In her remarks, the Minister of State, Federal Capital Territory Administration, Dr. Ramatu Tijjani Aliyu represented by the Permanent Secretary, Olusade Adesola stated that with the right structure in place, the Livestock Sub -Sector had the capacity to become Nigeria’s second leading revenue earner.
She expressed optimism that with such Presidential Interventions as the nationwide vaccination exercise, the menace of animal diseases would be curtailed and it would enhance sustainable development as well as guarantee food security in the country.
In her welcome address , the Chief Veterinary Officer of Nigeria and the Director Veterinary and Pest Control Services, Dr, Maimuna Habib stated the Ministry’s commitment towards capacity building in the Federal and State levels through training and re-training for diseases emergencies and protect loss of livelihood.
She pointed out the Ministry’s continuous support and collaboration with States to ensure the good health of livestock in Nigeria through the provision of vaccines, trainings, disinfectants and veterinary drugs among others.
Highlight of the event was the symbolic flag off of Vaccination Exercise by the Hon. Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Mohammed Mahmood Abubakar and the Representative of the Hon. Minister of State FCTA, Olusade Adesola, among others
In attendance were Sheep and Goat Farmers Association of Nigeria, Members of Pastoral Associations, Myetti Allah cattle Breeders, Traditional Rulers among others.
The Major Transboundary Animal Diseases are namely; Contagious Bovine Pleuropneumonia, CBPP, Foot and Mouth Diseases, FMD, Peste des Petits Ruminants, PPR, African Swine Fever, ASF and Animal Trypanosomosis and Tick – Borne Diseases.