By: Zakari Aliyu
The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), has vaccinated 1.2 million livestock against Anthrax disease thereby exceeding the one million target since the vaccination exercise started one month ago.
The Acting Secretary, Agriculture & Rural Development Secretariat, Mallam Ishaq Abubakar Sadeeq, disclosed this when he led a team of officials of the Agric Secretariat to some parts of the FCT to assess the progress and impact of the exercise in the Territory.
The Secretary revealed that since the exercise commenced, the Secretariat has been working assiduously to ensure that lots of ground is covered considering the fatal nature of the disease.
His words: “We have since the directive was given by the Permanent Secretary during the flag off exercise in Gwagwalada to ensure that we deliver on the target to vaccinate at least one million livestock as we have far exceeded that target, because as at the last count over 1.2 million livestock consisting of cattle, sheep, donkeys, goats have been vaccinated”.
He appreciated the Veterinary Doctors and other health personnel involved in the exercise for working diligently to ensure that they meet the target given by the Permanent Secretary for the vaccination of least one million cattle, sheep and goats within a one month period set for the exercise.
In an interview with newsmen during the visit, Sadeeq disclosed that the Secretariat has exceeded the target ”
Sadeeq described the ongoing vaccination exercise against the Anthrax disease in the FCT as a resounding success; reiterating that the timely response to combatting the disease through the exercise as a testament of the Administration’s proactiveness and commitment to the implementation of programmes that will not only guarantee public health safety of residents but mitigate the threat posed by the contagious and potentially fatal animal diseases.
On the impact of the exercise, the Secretary stated that inspite of the proximity of Suleja where the Anthrax case was first recorded, there has not been any reported case in the FCT, a situation which he attributed to the proactive action taken by the FCT Administration.
“In carrying out the exercise we made sure that all those that came with their animals were vaccinated, not minding if they were here in FCT or from the neighboring states. This to a very large extent has contributed to the success that we have recorded and I want to assure you that even though the exercise officially ends by the end of the week, our Veterinary officials will remain in the field” Sadeeq said.
He, however, expressed the need for livestock owners to be vigilant of symptoms such as flu, dark unclothed blood flowing from nose, ears, mouth or anal of their animals and report to the FCT Veterinary Health Centers that are located in all the Area Councils.
“In the FCT, we have a very efficient animal disease reporting system, which allows our personnel respond swiftly to emergencies in any part of the FCT. We handle some of the diagnosis at the FCT Veterinary clinic in Nyanya, while some are taken to the National Veterinary Research Institute (NVRI) in Vom, Plateau state,” he said.
While receiving the team, the Director Veterinary Services, Dr. Regina Ada Adulugba, expressed appreciation to the Permanent Secretary FCT, Mr. Olusade Adesola, for his support and assistance as the Secretariat carried out the exercise.
She said that the response from livestock owners has been very impressive declaring that over 90% of cattle population in the FCT have been vaccinated.