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No apology for kicking against profiling of Fulanis as killers, kidnappers – Gov. Bala (Pictures)

Story from Ahmad SAKA, Bauchi

The Bauchi State Governor, Senator Bala Mohammed Andulkadir, has explained that he has no apology for kicking against the profiling of the Fulani tribe as killers and kidnappers.

Governor Mohammed stated this on Wednesday during the official launching of the 2020/2021 annual livestock vaccination campaign, held at Galambi Cattle Ranch in Bauchi.

He said that the Fulani tribe over the years have been making so many sacrifices in their nomadic and pastoral life, adding that the protein needs of the country through the supply of beef would not have been possible without their contribution.

Governor Mohammed said that there is no tribe or group that is free from criminality, so labelling a particular tribe with a crime is unfair and breeds disunity in the country.

“We kicked against the profiling of the Fulanis as killers and kidnappers, we have no apology for what we have done because what we have done is to say the truth, that there is no tribe or group that is free from criminality.

“We are not saying that to spite anybody or spark unnecessary controversy, we have made our point. Nigerians across the board have discussed it and I am happy to say that from all indications, the majority of sensible Nigerians have appreciated what we have said and that is the point.”

He said the government has approved and released the sum of 32,147,500,000 million naira for the conduct of the 2021 annual livestock vaccination campaign in the state.

Governor Bala said the money covered vaccines, equipment and allowances for the exercise.

He said livestock rearing not only brings income to the people but serves as a means of supplementing the protein requirements of the people as well as raw materials to industries.

The Governor said his administration is aware of the significant contribution of the veterinary sub-sector in the area of public health, preventive medicine, food security and safety among others.

He said the sub-sector has equally been playing a big role in the control of emerging diseases most of which are zoonotic in nature.

“I understand that the consistent and sustained vaccination of livestock against various diseases is a way of controlling and eliminating diseases with devastating impact on our livestock and because of the efforts of the Bauchi State Veterinary Department in the disease reporting, the World Health Organisation for Animal Health through the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD), Department of Veterinary and Pest Control, donated 6,000 doses of anti-rabies vaccines to Bauchi State.”

Governor Bala said in an effort to ensure maximum support to the veterinary professionals, the state government decided to sustain the veterinary students’ manpower scheme inherited from the previous administration despite an embargo on employment.

“This administration has been maintaining and supporting the State Agency for Nomadic Education with a view to educating our teeming nomadic population, thereby improving livestock production in the state.”

The Governor said the state government has equally been collaborating with Federal Government on the full implementation of the National Livestock Transformation Programme to improve the livestock sub-sector of the economy, reduce poverty, create awareness and bring the nomadic Fulanis closer to government.

“My administration is aware of the activities of Fulani organisations in promoting peaceful coexistence in the state, promoting the interest and wellbeing of pastoralists, wealth creation and conflict mediation particularly in the state.”

The Governor used the medium to commend professional bodies in complementing the efforts of his administration in the area of animal production health and the general public health.

In a keynote address, the Chief Veterinary Officer of Nigeria, Dr Olaniran Alabi, said rabies is one of the priority transboundary animal diseases and has remained endemic in Nigeria since it was first reported in 1912 where some of the constraints in the control of the disease are, that majority of dogs are filled with lice, unvaccinated and allowed to roam freely in the communities.

He said rabies is a highly fatal viral disease affecting all warm-blooded animals and noted that it was transmitted through the bite of an infected animal on a man with 99 per cent fatality if efficient post-exposure prophylaxis is not instituted early.

“I wish to specially appreciate His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Bauchi State, Senator Bala Abdulkadir for his continuous support and a keen interest in all veterinary and livestock activities in Bauchi state.”

On his part, the State Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Samaila Burga said the state government has provided an enabling environment to enhance the production capacity of livestock farmers by tackling their challenges encountered in the process.

The Commissioner said eight hundred thousand livestock and six thousand rabies would be vaccinated in the 2021 livestock vaccination campaign.

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