Gov. Abubakar Bello of Niger, on Wednesday, charged the state Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries to intensify efforts on animal husbandry production as an integral part of his administration’s agricultural transformation agenda.
Bello made this appeal when he visited the state Livestock Improvement and Breeding Centre at Tagwai Dam in Bosso Local Government Area of the state.
The governor lamented that the progress and process of developing unique species of cattle at the centre was slow and promised to meet with the ministry to fast track its development.
“The previous administration imported many of the Bonsmara breed from South Africa with the hope that by now, we should have been doing artificial insemination, so that over time, we will be able to improve on our local breed, especially the bokolo breed.
“It is a wonderful programme but unfortunately, I have to find out why we have not made much progress,” he said.
According to him, the whole idea of the centre is to have improved generation of cattle for more qualitative milk and beef production.
He disclosed that the state government had partnered with a South African firm on Bonsmara, a disease-resistant cattle semen supply.
“The state government has sponsored four veterinary doctors to South Africa for training in artificial insemination,’’ he said, adding that there would be an improvement on the production of milk.
The governor said that a crossbreeding between the Bonsmara and the local boakolo species of cattle production were effective in the state, saying it was time for such an effort to be redoubled.
He said that with the Bobi Grazing Reserve, it was time for government to assist the herdsmen with artificial insemination to get the rare cattle of 500kg- 600kg that could produce high quantity of milk of 10 litres per day instead of two litres daily.