We must discourage roaming of livestock in 21st Century – Prof Nwosu

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Prof. Chijioke Nwosu an Emeritus Professor of Animal Breeding and Genetics, University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) has said that it is an abomination for Federal Government to still allow open grazing of animals in the country in this 21st century.

Nwosu said this in Nsukka on Monday in a lead Paper Presentation, during the Maiden Conference and Alumni Home-Coming 2024 of the Department of Animal Science, UNN.

With the theme “Innovative Approach to Sustainable Livestock Production and Protein Supply in the 21st Century: A Panacea to Food Security in Nigeria”.

He said that Nigeria must imbibe the practice of innovative approaches to enhance livestock production that discouraged roaming of livestock.

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“It is an abomination for the country to allow cattle, goats, pigs, poultry, etc. to roam about roads and streets in this 21st century.

“It is imperative that all livestock producers in the country should imbibe and practice innovative approaches in animal husbandry, animal breeding, improvements in feeding nutrition and management of our livestock.

“Regrettably, in Nigeria and most Africa countries because of poor leadership, legislations that has resulted in poor contributions of most animal/livestock scientists, livestock production is grossly inadequate.

“Our livestock roam about and eat whatever they can find on their way with little supplementation, they met randomly without guided mating, and they remain virtually unselected for longer generation,” he said.

The Emeritus Professor called on the members of the National Assembly to enact a law that will support innovative practices in livestock production, as well as stop open grazing throughout the country.

“The National Assembly should enact basic laws that will promote livestock production in all parts of Nigeria that will ensure all livestock farmers rear their animals and poultry indoors.

“Our animals must be well taken care of, feed very well, housed, to enhance animal protein in them for quality human consumption” he said.

In a Keynote Speech, Prof Suleiman Bogoro, former Executive Secretary of TETFund, and alumnus of the department highlighted facts and status of the Nigerian livestock sector.

Bogoro, described the livestock sector as an endangered subsector craving for elevation to a full and promising sector that had potential.

“The priority areas of the livestock industry needs appropriate policy framework, appropriate modern production system, innovation, relevant technologies, value chain development and marketing,” he said.

In a remark Mr. Raymond Isiadnso, President, Animal Science Association of Nigeria, who chaired the occasion commended the department for organising the event.

The chairman who is also alumnus of the department emphasised the need for graduates of the Department of Animal Science, UNN extraction to be come together in order to support programmes and activities of the department as a way of giving back to their alma mata.

He urged students of the department to consider themselves lucky, stating that opportunities abounds in the profession.
He made a donation of N1m towards the proposed building of Animals Science Department Alumni Building.

In remark, Prof. Romanus Ezeokonkwo, the Acting Vice-Chancellors, UNN, while declaring the conference open, said that the ultimate goal of the event should be on how to bring the alumni together to give more to the department that made them what they are today.

“The event is also expected to evalute progress in animal agriculture in the country as a productive means of producing animals that support global food security and high-quality animal protein.

“The event should also serve as a forum for researchers, scientists, industry players, research and education institutions to showcase their valuable studies pertaining to the conference team,” he said.

Earlier, Prof. Ndubuisi Machebe, Head, Department of Animal Science, UNN attributed inadequate funding, scarce animal and feed resources, poor infrastructures, disease outbreaks, veterinary services, climate change, and others as some of the challenges facing livestock production.

“Interestingly our alumni all over the world are contributing in no small measure towards the development of innovative solutions to mitigate these challenges,” he said

Machebe commended the university authority for approving the conference, as well as guests/participants, staff, students and alumni of the department for their various contributions towards the success of the conference.

Others are, installation of a network of 20 or more laptop with internet facility to digitalise the departmental library, among others

His Royal Highness, Prof Ikenna Omeje, the Traditional Ruler of Edemani Ibagwa Aka Kingdom in Igboeze South Local Government Area of Enugu State.

Who was the Royal Father of the day, was among alumni of the department that attended the homecoming.

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