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Nigeria loses ₦4.5bn yearly to Newcastle disease due to inadequate vet services

The Newcastle disease is a highly contagious disease in birds and is caused by a para-myxo virus.

Treating Newcastle disease [Farmers Trend]

Dr Moses Arokoyo, President, NVMA, disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Abuja.

NAN reports that Newcastle disease is a highly contagious disease in birds and is caused by a para-myxo virus.

Birds affected by this disease are fowls, turkeys, geese, ducks, pheasants, partridges, guinea fowl, and other wild and captive birds such as ostriches, emus, and rhea. Arokoyo said that such a huge amount would have been channeled to productive ventures or developmental projects if adequate veterinary services were extended to the rural areas.

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The president, who identified veterinary doctors as key to nipping the nation’s disease burden in the bud, decried poor attention accorded to the profession in the country. He said that the nation presently had a ratio of one veterinarian to 3000 or 4000 animals, describing the ratio as grossly inadequate to address the nation’s disease burden as well as nutrition security.

Arokoyo said that 75% of emerging and re-emerging diseases were from animals. According to him, the country will continue to have an escalation of zoonotic disease failure until it employs a large number of veterinarians in remote parts of the country.

“If we want to address the problem and ensure food security as President Bola Tinubu has declared an emergency on food security, then we need to change the status quo.

“We need to employ more veterinarians; we need to build capacity; empower the veterinarians to do the needful; to secure our food and our source of protein,” he said.

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