Prof Calls for End to Open Grazing in Nigeria - LivestockTrend


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Wednesday 3 July 2024

Prof Calls for End to Open Grazing in Nigeria

Professor Chijioke Nwosu, an Emeritus Professor of Animal Breeding and Genetics at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN), has strongly criticized the continued practice of open grazing of livestock in Nigeria, labeling it as outdated and unsustainable in the 21st century. He made these remarks during the inaugural Conference and Alumni Homecoming 2024 of the Department of Animal Science at UNN, where he delivered a keynote address on innovative approaches to sustainable livestock production and food security in Nigeria.

Highlighting the theme of the conference, "Innovative Approach to Sustainable Livestock Production and Protein Supply in the 21st Century," Prof. Nwosu emphasized the need for Nigeria to adopt modern practices that discourage the free roaming of livestock. He stated, "It is an abomination for the country to allow cattle, goats, pigs, poultry, etc., to roam freely on roads and streets in this day and age."

The professor stressed the importance of implementing innovative animal husbandry, breeding, nutrition, and management techniques to enhance livestock productivity and ensure quality animal protein for human consumption. He criticized current practices where livestock roam freely, feed indiscriminately, and mate randomly, leading to inefficiencies in production.

Calling for legislative support, Prof. Nwosu urged the National Assembly to enact laws promoting indoor livestock rearing across Nigeria. He advocated for improved care, nutrition, and housing of animals to boost their protein content and overall quality.

In a related keynote address, Prof. Suleiman Bogoro, former Executive Secretary of TETFund and UNN alumni, underscored the urgent need for policy reforms and technological advancements in Nigeria's livestock sector. He outlined key areas for development, including modern production systems, innovation, technology adoption, and robust value chain management.

Mr. Raymond Isiadnso, President of the Animal Science Association of Nigeria and event chair, commended the department for organizing the conference. He emphasized the importance of alumni support in advancing the department's goals and initiatives.

The conference, declared open by Prof. Romanus Ezeokonkwo, Acting Vice-Chancellor of UNN, aimed to foster collaboration among researchers, industry players, and educational institutions in addressing challenges in animal agriculture. Prof. Ndubuisi Machebe, Head of the Department of Animal Science, highlighted various challenges facing the sector and lauded the contributions of alumni toward innovative solutions.

The event also witnessed significant contributions, including the donation of N1 million towards the construction of an Alumni Building for the Department of Animal Science. His Royal Highness, Prof. Ikenna Omeje, Traditional Ruler of Edemani Ibagwa Aka Kingdom and an alumni attendee, expressed support for the department's initiatives and underscored the importance of alumni involvement in its development.

Overall, the conference served as a platform to evaluate progress in animal agriculture and promote solutions that enhance global food security through sustainable livestock production.

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