Nigerian Livestock Sector Restricted by Animal Diseases – FAO - LivestockTrend


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Tuesday 13 November 2018

Nigerian Livestock Sector Restricted by Animal Diseases – FAO

Mr. Suffuyan Koroma, Nigeria’s representative at the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) who was represented by Mr. Colomba Vakuru, an officer at the FAO pointed out that animal diseases, and particularly zoonotic (transferrable from animals to humans) diseases were largely responsible for the ineffectiveness being experienced in the Nigerian livestock sector.

This was revealed in Abuja, at a Good Emergency Management Practices (GEMP) training in Abuja. The FAO representatives revealed that the livestock sector in the country made up only about one-third of the total agricultural output despite the large number of farmers involved in livestock agriculture. 

He pointed out the obvious fact that oil is Nigeria’s major source of income, and juicy potentials which lie in livestock production remain largely untapped.
The FAO pegged this at certain ills which plague the livestock sector which include trans-boundary animal diseases and zoonotic diseases (as earlier stated), faults in organizing the livestock value chain, low management and control of disease outbreaks (using the recurrent avian influenza (HPAI & H5N8) outbreaks as a case study).

Such outbreaks, he noted, have drastic effects on the economic and social aspects of life when poor management teams exist. He stressed the need for effective outbreak response teams and ‘emergency management planning principles’ to nip these diseases in the bud before they constitute major crises.

The training, titled Strengthen Capacity to Manage Animal Disease Emergencies in Nigeria is designed to enable personnel to mitigate animal health threats which may arise. The FAO representative however stressed the need for coordinated outbreak response measures to be put in place in the country and throughout Africa.

The Director, Department of Veterinary and Pest Control Services, Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Dr. Olaniran Alabi remarked that managing diseases would depend largely on the readiness of personnel and the resources available to contain them. He also expressed confidence in the training’s ability to hone participants’ skills in effective disease management and control.

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