FCTA to stop unhygienic meat transportation by 2021
NEWSMAN, Abuja – Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) is making moves to stop the practice of unhygienic transportation of meat on rickety vehicles and motorcycles within the city and major towns of the territory by 2021.
Acting Director, Department of Veterinary Services, FCT Agric and Rural Development Secretariat, Dr Idris Admoh, made the disclosure in an interview in Abuja where he revealed that the move was part of efforts by the FCTA to curtail practices that exposed meat to environmental pollution hazard and contaminations.
“There is the hygiene aspect which is how do you handle the meat after slaughtering into the various conveyors down to transportation from the abattoirs to the market. The butchers will finish the slaughtering, then we will do an inspection for the process and all the engagements of transporting the meat from the abattoirs to the market is so messy,”he said.
Admoh said that the Animal Disease Control Act of 1988, was very specific on the control of animal diseases, adding that the FCTA had the right to define how meat entering FCT should be inspected and certified.
He explained that over the years, the system of abattoir operation in Nigeria, which started as a tradition has now gone wrong in so many ways, and so in order to make sure that meat getting to consumers were wholesome for consumption, the Agric secretariat had come up with a policy direction known as ‘Meat Hulage System’
“When you look at the circle of slaughtering of animals and getting the meat to the market, at every chain it is our duty from the abattoir to make sure that after inspection, the meat passing from the abattoirs are wholesome and fit for human consumption,” Admoh said.
“Over time you see people transporting meat in rikety vehicles, people transporting meats in okada not properly covered and protected. If we allow these to continue, that means whatever we must have done in abattoir is not having result because we are still exposing the same meat to pollution hazard and contaminations.
According to him, with the rate at which FCT is growing, there is an ongoing process to document every area that meat is slaughtered, and assured that by 2021 the issue of transporting meat in a very unhygienic situation will be stopped in Abuja, News Agency of Nigeria reported.
Admoh further dislosed that the agric secretariat had inspectors in all the area councils and it was constantly communicating with the Area Veterinary officers in all the councils to monitor and ensure compliance, and added that the FCTA would not allow the use of any vehicle or container except the ones that were described in the policy.
“In the area of animal disease information, we are trying to harmonise our disease reporting system with the area councils. Where whatever is happening at the secretariat or area councils will be communicated to all areas,” he said.
He disclosed that the agric secretariat had inspectors in all the area councils and it was constantly communicating with the Area Veterinary officers in all the councils to monitor and ensure compliance, and further explained that the implementation of the meat haulage policy was going to be in phases, because the issue of logistics was not going to be easy.
“By the time we start in phases, there are Area Councils that are going to be in the mainstream of what we are doing like the Abuja Municipal Area Council, the Gwagwalada Area Council and Bwari Area Council. By the time the policy is fully out, we are going to sit down with the major stakeholders in the area councils to brainstorm on how we are going to jointly work,” he added