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Veterinarians Decries their Dwindling Number in the Public Service

A former director of the Federal Department of Veterinary and Pest Control Services of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Gideon Mshelbwala has decried the dwindling capacity of national veterinary services occasioned by retirement of public service veterinarians without adequate replacement. Dr Mshelbwala stated this while delivering a keynote address during the 2021 leadership retreat organized by the Nigerian Veterinary Medical Association for state chairmen and secretaries of the association on Wednesday 17th March 2021 at the Veterinary Council of Nigeria building in Maitama, Abuja. Speaking on the theme “The future of veterinary practice in Nigeria”, the immediate past Chief Veterinary Officer of Nigeria stated that even though the veterinary practice in the country is now being dominated by veterinarians in private practice, veterinarians in government civil service are very key in regulating the practice and in the fight against transboundary diseases.

“National Veterinary service is dwindling because of retiring public service veterinarians that are not replaced. It is sad to know that most states of the federation have less than 10 veterinarians in the government civil service who cannot cope with the enormous need for veterinary services in those states”

Dr Mshelbwala stated that this development is worrisome as the future of veterinary practice in Nigeria is under threat. He called on government to as a matter of necessity employ veterinarians to fill up the gaps that are created in the national vet service.

In his address, the Director General, Nigerian Agricultural Quarantine Services, Dr Vincent Isegbe who was the chairman of the occasion called on state chairmen and secretaries of the association to be more serious with activities that will move the profession forward. He called on them to key into the vision of the present leadership of the veterinary council on knowledge update for veterinarians through the available continuing education programmes and in driving a practice that is ethical and professional as they deal with members in the various states.

Also speaking at the event, the president of Veterinary Council of Nigeria, Dr Aisha Abubakar Baju challenged all participants to brace up in handling the current challenges of the profession. Dr Abubakar stated that the challenges the profession is facing cannot be surmounted at a better time than now. She called on all veterinarians to support the present administration in the fight against all forms of unprofessionalism.

Earlier in a welcome address, the president, Nigerian Veterinary Medical Association, Dr Ibrahim Shehu Ado welcome participants to the summit stating that it is an avenue to discuss the challenges of the association especially in the period of dwindling national Veterinary practice and proffer solutions to the challenges.

Participants at the 2021 NVMA Leadership Summit

The leadership summit is an annual event of the Nigerian Veterinary Medical Association where the national executive council members, and state chairmen and secretaries converge to discuss the issues affecting the association and the profession in general. LIVESTONEWS.

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