The Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has begun a nationwide 2022 free mass vaccination campaign against trans-boundary animal diseases (TADs) in the North West zone of Nigeria.
The exercise took place at Maigatari Local Government Area, a border town, as part of federal government’s policy to contain livestock diseases and achieve herd immunity for prevention and possible eradication.
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The targeted diseases include contagious bovine pleuropneumonia, (CBPPV), foot and mouth disease (FMDV), Pest Des Petits Ruminants (PPRV) and Newcastle disease (ND).
Flagging off the exercise, the Minister of Agriculture, Dr Muhammad Mahmood Abubakar, said it would be replicated in other geopolitical zones of the country.
Represented by the Director/Chief Veterinary Officer of the Federation, Dr Maimuna Abdullahi Habib, Abubakar described livestock production as a major means of livelihood of Nigerians, which employs about 70 per cent of its population.
Besides, he said the livestock industry provided economic and food security, nutrition and means of livelihood for majority of our rural dwellers.
“Livestock supplies the much-needed protein for the growth of our children, spendable income and cash reserves for use in times of emergency, and are handy to fulfill cultural and religious obligations.
“Furthermore, the byproducts from these animals, like hides and skin, are used in the production of belts, shoes and bags, amongst others, in addition to the excellent organic fertilisers that come from animal wastes for crop production,” he said.
The minister said the federal government, through the ministry, would be supporting states in the zone with 1.5 million doses of CBPP vaccines, one million doses of PPR vaccines, 357, 567 doses of Newcastle disease vaccines and 830,000 doses of FMD vaccines. Out of the figures, Jigawa is allocated 252,000 doses of CBPP vaccines, 120,000 doses of FMD vaccines, 152,000 doses of PPR vaccines and 51, 081 doses of ND vaccines
The minister said Nigeria currently has about 22.3 million cattle, 53.06 million sheep, 99.8 million goats, 9.2 million pigs and over 425.7million poultry spread across the six geopolitical zones of the country.
“The full potentials of these animals and the attendant socio-economic benefits they provide cannot be guaranteed unless they are in a state of good health, which can only be achieved through vaccination against the killer diseases. Therefore, Nigeria would continue to support and collaborate with states in carrying out annual vaccinations against these trans-boundary diseases in our livestock population in order to achieve the much-desired herd immunity for prevention and possible eradication,” he said.
Governor Badaru Abubakar, who was represented by the Commissioner for Agriculture, Mohammed Alhassan, noted that the state government had vaccinated over 3,5m cows; 2.6m sheep and goats; 1.1 million local poultry and 153,450 dogs against CBPP, PPR, ND and rabies respectively since the inception of his administration in 2015.
He said, “Due to these exercises, reports of disease outbreaks have declined drastically, and I believe that with continuous vaccination, these preventable diseases would either be eliminated or brought under control.”