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Jos park gets dead lion”s replacement on barter trade with Maiduguri

The lions’ cage at the Jos Wildlife Park in Plateau State will soon receive a lion from the Maiduguri Wildlife Park in Borno State, on…

The lions’ cage at the Jos Wildlife Park in Plateau State will soon receive a lion from the Maiduguri Wildlife Park in Borno State, on a trade by barter deal entered by the two states, state commissioner of Culture, Tourism and Hospitality has said.

 “We are giving them one of our animals, because we do in-house breeding here. And they will give us a lion in exchange. This arrangement will replace the lion that was killed late last year,” Nwankon John, who initiated the mutual partnership between the two wildlife parks told Daily Trust, on phone. “We have made a proposal to that effect to the State Executive Council (SEC), and we have got the approval. We are only waiting for the release of funds to do the exchange.”

 The park, on December 2, 2015, recorded a loss with the killing Leo, a lion which escaped confinement through a rusty cage.

 Jos Wildlife Park is known for having experience with lions breaking out from that cage, which is located at the eastern gates of the park, the last being Leo, which was killed by a team of soldiers invited by the Plateau State Tourism Corporation, managers of the facility.

 Personnel at the park had said Leo was hungry for days, and was probably on its way to finding food when it jumped unto a raised platform, and forced the cage to escape confinement.

 The lion was shot severally, and killed by the soldiers, drawing worldwide condemnation by animal rights activists who insisted that the park needed to have used trained personnel to demobilise the animal, using tranquilizers and dart guns.

 But John Doy, the General Manager of the corporation had said the agency does not have tranquilizers, and decided on inviting the soldiers as last resort to save the lives of residents of neighbouring areas including Federal Low Cost, Angulu Jos and Tudun Wada.

 The state commissioner said the proposal to replace Leo was done as a total package which also entails doing a lasting mending of the confinement at the overall cost of about N2 million, before doing the exchange.

 Nwankon said the administration of Governor Simon Lalong is committed to reviving the tourism sub-sector, to attract investment in a state recovering from over a decade of violent hostilities.  

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