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AfDB to spend $700m on livestock development projects

The African Development Bank has disclosed plans to spend the sum of $700 million to support livestock development projects across African countries.

President of African Development Bank, (AfDB), Akinwunmi Adesina, made this known, on Tuesday, in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, where the Executive Secretary of the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund), Professor Suleiman Bogoro, was conferred with the highest honour of the animal science profession in Nigeria.

Adesina, who was represented by Emmanuel Adesina, in his keynote address, said the AfDB recognised the livestock subsector as important in the post-COVID-19 recovery effort.

He said that was “why in 2021 and 2022, the African Development Bank plans to spend $700 million to support livestock development projects across African countries.”

Bogoro, who is also a Professor of Animal Science, was inducted into the prestigious animal science hall of fame for his achievements and contributions to the subsector.

The award was conferred on him at the 10th Nigeria Institute of Animal Science/National Association of Animal Science Conference in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.

Presenting the award, the President of Nigeria Institute of Animal Science, Prof Baba Abubakar, said Bogoro has consistently supported the profession, by funding animal science conferences, activities and programmes.

Abubakar said in some instances, he provided grants to postgraduate students of animal science to enhance the quality of their research.

“His enthusiasm for a paradigm shift from a commodity-based to a knowledge-based economy has led to the inauguration of the TETFund standing committee on Research and Development to cover the various subsectors.

“He is highly admired and respected in the animal science profession and beyond. This honour does not come to us as a surprise.

“His highly remarkable ability to identify talents has led him to assemble what we can refer to as creme de la creme of this unprecedented laudable initiative across the length and breadth of this country,” he said.

According to him, the eventful birth of the National Research and Development Foundation, NRDF, will indeed be Bogoro’s gift to the nation.

He said the TETFund Executive Secretary has most uniquely remained focus on advocating for increased funding of research and development and most especially, increased funding for agricultural research.

The award was received on behalf of the Executive Secretary of TETFund by Dr Mustapha Popoola, his Technical Assistant on Research and Development, while Bogoro was joined virtually to deliver his acceptance remarks.

Responding, the TETFund boss thanked leaders of the Institute for the award, stating that the induction was coming from a profession that he is proud of.

He pledged to continue to play a supportive role for the institute especially at this time that the agricultural sector is underperforming because of a number of things that have not been done right.

Bogoro said his advocacy for the institutionalisation of research and development in the animal science subsector was to create the opportunity to inject value addition in the agric sector.

He said the absence of such value addition has been responsible for the poor performance of the agric sector.

“It pains me that some years back, the agric sector in Nigeria was contributing 41% of the GDP of the nation. It went down to 35 recently. That is unacceptable.

“And the livestock subsector is the worst for it. It has continued to be the most laggard of the two subsectors and I believe that we have all a responsibility to reverse this status because in more advanced economies, in the Agric sector, the livestock subsector contributes more in terms of financial value,” he said.

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