FAO to empower veterinarians on emerging trans-boundary animal diseases

The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations says it will empower veterinarians with capacity and skills for detecting and controlling emerging trans-boundary animal diseases in the country.

Mr Emmanuel Kihaule, FAO Nigeria Communications Specialist said this in a statement on Friday in Abuja.

Kihaule said it was part of FAO technical support to the country, adding that it would be achieved through the Emergency Center for Transboundary Animal Diseases programme.

He said that FAO was also empowering field-based animal health professionals to prevent, control, and respond to the spread of zoonotic diseases in Nigeria.

According to Kihaule, this is through the In-service Applied Veterinary Epidemiology Training (ISAVET) programme.

He said that the ISAVET training of trainers’ and mentors’ workshop was held from July 5 to July 16 in Lagos.

Kihaule said the training was part of efforts to kick-start implementation of the ISAVET programme in the country.

He said the main programme was expected to commence in August with a cohort of trainees from across the country.

Kihaule said that according to the World Health Organisation (WHO), more than 70 per cent of emerging infectious diseases in humans originated from animals.

“It is therefore essential that veterinarians fighting zoonotic diseases have the necessary skills to detect and respond rapidly,” he said.

“Nigeria just joined the ISAVET roll-out this year and this is implemented in collaboration with the Department of Veterinary and Pest Control Services, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development,’’ Kihaule said. (NAN)