The Gombe State Government has begun a state-wide vaccination campaign against contagious Bovine Pluero-Pneumonia in cattle and pestes des petits ruminants and sheep and goats.
The annual campaign is to treat about one million cattle, sheep and goats across the state, so as to control economically important trans-boundary animal diseases of livestock.
The success of the campaign is attributed to Governor Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya, who is resuscitating the programme, which has not been observed for some years now, with the release of funds to procure the vaccines.
Governor Yahaya said because of the importance his the administration placed on the Agricultural sector, he decided to revive the annual animal inoculation, with the release of 12 million Naira for the purchase of the vaccine, which would treat animals across the state for free.
The Governor said because of the importance his administration placed on the agricultural sector, he decided to revive the annual animal inoculation, which has not been carried out for some years now, with the release of the sum of 12 million Naira for the purchase of the vaccine, which would treat animals across the state free of charge.
”The vaccination is for all animal farmers of any ethnic group. It is for animal farmers, who reside in any part of the state, no matter his tribe, as long he has his animals. This is because, poverty, hunger, conflict, and any uprising, have no eyes. When they occur, they do not differentiate between who is who and who is what. So, I encourage us all do carry out the exercise honestly. And anyone using this free vaccine to make money from it should be reported to the authorities immediately,”Governor Yahaya said.
The Commissioner of Agriculture and Animal Husbandry, Alhaji Muhammadu Magaji, said the state had not inoculated this group of animals for some years now, which has brought a serious setback in the livestock sub-sector, consequently allowing some animal diseases to ravage the animals in the state.
While commending the various interventions of Governor Yahaya in the agricultural sector, the Commissioner of Agriculture and Animal Husbandry solicited for the allocation of more resources for the procurement of more vaccines to embark on the control of other animal diseases of public importance, such as rabies and Avian Influenza, which also a threat to human health.
Alhaji Magaji also solicited for the recruitment of more Veterinary Doctors and superintendents, because the state could only boast of only eight veterinary doctors and 24 superintendents in the public service of the state, which were grossly inadequate to carter for the number of animals and other veterinary facilities across the state.
He said there were about 950 thousand to 1.1 million cattle and countless other animals in the state, of which the number of veterinary doctors and superintendents could not cover.
The Gombe State Commissioner of Agriculture ad Animal Husbandry believes recruiting more veterinary doctors and other veterinary staff would greatly assist in the control of disease and public health, as well as other diseases that could be transmitted from animal to man, such as tuberculosis, Avian Influenza and Rabies.
“This vaccination exercise is free for the benefit of our livestock owners. A mechanism has been put in place to monitor the smooth conduct of the vaccination exercise. I will like to appeal to local government authorities to support government efforts towards the successful conduct of the exercise. May I also urged the livestock farmers, traditional rulers and the general public to avail themselves of this great opportunity to vaccinate their animals and to also cooperate with the staff involved for a successful state-wide vaccination exercise,” Alhaji Magaji said.
Governor Yahaya encouraged the public to make use of the opportunity give, which he said was free for all farmers who rear animals, irrespective of their ethnicity, because all tribes engage in animal business, hence the need to put in their best efforts to enhance livestock farming in the state.
He said President Muhammadu Buhari had in his end of year review, marked Gombe as one of the states to serve as a model for modern animal reserve, with about 23 grazing reserves in the state.
The Gombe State Governor encouraged farmers and pastorals to cooperate in operating both animal and crop farming, so as to produce more food to eliminate hunger and stay in peace.