The Sokoto state government has inaugurated a modern animal artificial insemination centre, with a 5,000-litre daily capacity milk production factory to enhance the state’s income.
Commissioning the centre on Friday, the President, Veterinary Council of Nigeria (VCN), AIG. A’ishatu Abubakar-Baju, lauded the efforts of the Sokoto state government and urged other states to emulate what, she described, as distinct initiative.
Abubakar-Baju said the centre, along with other auxiliary veterinary facilities, had placed Sokoto state high in the area of animal production for subsistence and commercial purposes.
She lamented the governments’ emphasis on crop production, neglecting livestock services which were interwoven, in terms of agricultural production and employment generation to the population.
According to her, Sokoto government efforts had equated the VCN innovative programmes, including digital upgrade, research and knowledge sharing, ensuring professionalism in veterinary practice as well as provision of standard platforms for healthy living, economic rejuvenation and food security.
Abubakar-Baju also inaugurated a 9-member Sokoto state Veterinary Practice Premises Task Force which will be providing professional licence veterinarians, register veterinary service outlets with routine inspections, sanctioning of defaulters and ensuring professional practice in the state.
The National President said that the TaskForce will serve as a platform to eliminat, quackery, ensure quality administration of vaccines and allied animal medications along breeding of professional service providers.
Earlier, Prof. Abdulkadir Junaidu, the state Commissioner of Animal Health and Fisheries Development, said that the sites along with the Embryo Transfer Technology Component were part of a Cattle Breeding Production project initiated by the state government.
Junaidu said the concept of a breeding programme was to improve the performance of indigenous livestock breeds through a mixture of natural breeding, artificial insemination and embryo transfer technology.
He explained that the efforts was initiated earlier than the launched National Livestock Transformation Plan by the Federal Government which has became inline with President Muhammadu Buhari’s diversification agenda.
The Commissioner noted that the country’s livestock sector has been bedevilled with that hindered it’s growth and project was a strategy to address the challenges.
” The growth in human population, expansion in human settlements, desertification, drying up of water points and abstraction of traditional cattle routes have aggravated these challenges.
” This is even worrisome when we consider the global demand for livestock products being projected to grow by more than 70 per cent by the year 2030 ” Junaidu said.
According to him, Gov Aminu Tambuwal’s administration had implemented programmes geared towards responding to challenges along with enhancing the economic well-being of citizens who mostly rely on farming and animals husbandry for their livelihood.
” The ministry has 122 veterinary doctors working alongside other livestock and fisheries personnel in the civil service whose competency and energies harness to drive development initiatives.
” The state government has commissioned pasture development component with more than 1000 hectares of land also with producing grains of the breeder project.
” We have laboratories, ambulatory vehicles, x-ray and ultrasound machines, including mobile ones, ensure annual livestock vaccinations.
”The state also established an inspectorate of disease surveillance and control, demarcated grazing serves to prevent farmers harder clashes for efficient services ” Prof. Junaidu said.
He appealed for NVC for establishing a centre, in Sokoto in recognition of veterinarian populations and training avenue platforms which will surely facilitated having more professionals and advance knowledge development.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Abubakar-Baju, along with other council members have inspected all the projects sites, milk production factory, veterinary clinics and other places and applauded Sokoto government commitments on fish and livestock production programmes.