The National Association of Nigerian Traders, NANTS, is constructing a world class small scale abattoir centre in Gwagwalada Area Council of the Federal Capital Territory.
Speaking at the ground breaking of the project in Giri Abuja, the President of NANTS, Doctor Ken Ukaoha said the project would be completed in the next six months.
He pointed out that the move was part of measures to address the ill and obsolete practices in slaughtering, processing and handling of meat in the Territory.
Doctor Ukaoha stated that the project was in collaboration with the West African Institute for Trade and Agricultural Development.
He explained that the centre would also serve as a training arena for butchers and other practitioners in the meat value chain including processors, traders, transporters and other handlers across the country as well as meant to showcase best practices to other practitioners in West Africa.
“A visit to an average abattoir and meat market in Nigeria exhibits disgusting sight of unhygienic practices which rather poss heavy public health risks and indeed constitute a breeding ground for possible pandemic and it was for these cogent reasons that NANTS and her consortium members sought to address the pronounced problems through the adoption of a holistic, comprehensive and integrated approach which will cover several related and independent activities even beyond the construction of the abattoir” Doctor Ukaoha stressed.
According to him, the centre will also among other things increase professionalism among value chain in the livestock and meat sector through the establishment of improved meat processing facilities, promote environmental safety, hygienic standards and effective regulatory measures.
He explained that this will also mobilize investment and generate attractive employment targeted at youths through the livestock and meat value chain.
In a remark, the Chairman of Gwagwalada Area Council, Alhaji Mustapha Adamu commended NANTS for selecting the Area for the project.
The Chairman who was represented by Mr Yohanna Ishaya promised to ensure the success of the project.
In a goodwwill message, an Assistant Director from Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr Ibrahim Mohammed said the project was in line with the Ministry’s programme of ensuring food security and nutritious food for all Nigerians.
Mr Mohammed stated that the Centre would serve as a model for the Ministry to replicate across the country.
On his part, the representative of West African Institute for Trade and Agricultural Development, Doctor John Ufoha said the project would go a long way in ensuring job creation for the youths and reduce the level of poverty in the area.
Dr. Ufoha expressed the Institute’s readiness to continue to collaborate with NANTS on projects that would uplift the living standard of the people.
Also, the FCT Chairman of Nigerian Butchers Association, Alhaji Ahmed Balogun described the project as a welcomed development.
Other stakeholders who spoke at the ground breaking also commended NANTS for the project