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Vet experts to FG: Excluding VCN from funding is ill advised

The Nigerian Veterinary Medical Association said the recent exclusion of the Veterinary Council of Nigeria by the Federal Government from national health regulators was “ill-advised…

The Nigerian Veterinary Medical Association said the recent exclusion of the Veterinary Council of Nigeria by the Federal Government from national health regulators was “ill-advised and will have a far-reaching and devastating effect” on the country.

The President of the association, Dr. Moses Arokoyo, said the action poses a “national public health risk to the over 200 million Nigerian lives.”

He said 75 percent of emerging and re-emerging human diseases are of animal, adding that “preventive medicine is no longer complete nor comprehensive without inclusion or proper placement of veterinarians in public health.

“This decision will negate efforts of the veterinary community in the fight against fake drug usage in animals without regard for withdrawal time. It also means increased consumption of meat laden with drug residues by the human population, leading to increased incidence of cancer cases, as well as antimicrobial resistance and ultimately increased deaths.

“It is estimated that over 10 million lives could be lost annually to antimicrobial resistance (AMR) by 2050.

“How do we prevent and control these, in addition to resurgence of zoonotic diseases without Government support? The combined effort of medical professionals and veterinarians is a more assured approach to safeguard the health and lives of Nigerians,” the group also said in a recent statement.

Dr Orokoyo said that the COVID-19 pandemic left a sour taste in all of our mouths as the livestock industry went comatose, and till date the multi-trilion naira poultry industry which employs an estimated 5 million Nigerians directly and 25 million indirectly is yet to recover from the cumulative effect of this, high cost of raw materials, Avian Influenza among others.

 

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