FCT Minister of State, Dr. Ramatu Tijjani Aliyu, has launched a livestock development and implementation plan with a gestation period of 10 years.
The minister who officially launched the plan at the opening ceremony of a two-day stakeholder’s engagement meeting stated that the plan was aimed at facilitating and enhancing the provision of critical infrastructure and resolving all social impediments towards the full development of the four grazing reserves in the FCT.
According to a press statement issued by Austine Elemue, S.A Media To FCT Minister of State, August 9, 2022, said the Minister noted that the outcome of this important meeting is expected to provide the FCT Administration with a roadmap toward a stable and prosperous livestock sub-sector and contribute to the desire to achieve food and nutrition security, create needed jobs, and stimulate further diversification of the economy away from the oil sector.
The minister revealed that the agricultural sector contributed about 22.36 percent to the national GDP in the first quarter of 2022, with the livestock sub-contributing about 7 percent to that figure, while regretting the potential that would enable the efficient growth of the sector to have yet to be activated.
“While this underscores sector and sub-sector relevance in economic growth, achieving targeted growth in livestock output has been slow.
“Projections suggest that with the exponential rise in human populations, especially in urban settings like the FCT, the demand for livestock products such as poultry meat, beef, and milk will grow without a commensurate capacity of the livestock industry to meet needs,,” she affirmed.
She, therefore, promised that the FCT Administration would provide the needed environment for the operators to excel.
According to her, “This present FCT Administration is relying on the strategic location of the FCT, with a livestock route network of over 300km, population growth, affluence of residents, favorable c, climatic conditions, abundant water resources, a good road network and air link, and access to evolving standard gauge rail networks, to make the FCT a preferred destination for livestock operators.
“We remain convinced that with all hands on deck, there are no stakeholders that can not be achieved”.
Aliyu, therefore, commended stakeholder’s engagement and participation that had yielded the desired results.
“Our work with Nestlé Nigeria Plc to pilot an innovative community-based dairy value chain development in one of our grazing reserves has seen milk collection grow by about 900% in the past year, and we are poised to activate more of such partnerships to deepen impacts,” she stressed.
Earlier, the FCTA Permanent Secof retary, Mr. Adesola Olusade, who was represented by the Director Human Resource Management, Malam Mohammed Bashir, stressed that this dynamiemphasizesn tune with modern institutional governance that lays emphasis on structured planning as a necessary prerequisite to a successful program implementapotentialesola also noted that the FCT is blessed with abundant potentials in the livestock sub-sector which is why the Administration has given deserved attention to the sector and the interest shown by the Africa Development Bank (AfDB) and Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) in funding the establishment of the Special Agro-Inustrial Processing Zones (SAPZ) is expected to provide an additional boost to the livestock sector.
In his remarks, Secretary Agriculture and Rural Development Secretariat, Malam Abubakar Ibrahim, reiterated that the FCT Administration is putting in place, structures and policies that would attract investors in the sector, as well as support the activities of small-holder livestock farmers.
He, however, commended the FCT Minister of State for demonstrating her passion for the Afortural sector, and the development of a 10-year action plan toward repositioning the livestock sector in FCT.