National Livestock Animal Welfare and Rabies Control Taskforce (NLAWRCT) was on Tuesday, 11th July, 2017 at the Barmoi Hotel at Aberdeen, under the auspices of the Ministry of Agriculture Forestry And Food Security (MAFFS), the Freetown City Council and other stakeholders briefed newsmen on the progress made in the fight against Rabies, and in the campaign for the welfare of animals.
Mr Mohamed S Bah, Program Personnel, National Livestock Animal Welfare Taskforce in the Ministry of Agriculture, in his presentation, told the Nationalist newspaper that in a National Livestock Animal Welfare and Rabies Consultative Workshop held on the 30th July, 2014 at the Hill Valley Hotel, Freetown, supported by the World Animal Protection (WAP) arrived at three key objectives which are; to understand the current status of animal welfare and rabies control in Sierra Leone, to undertake a tabletop scoping exercise of actors involved and gaps that needed to be addressed and to come up with a tentative road map of how the broad constituency involved in this thematic area suggest a national agenda should be driven.
Mr Bah continued that the plenary on the hill valley consultative workshop approve that, the appropriate host form the initiative will be the Livestock Policy Hub (LPH), embedded within the Livestock / Veterinary Services Division (LVSD) of the Ministry of Agriculture and a Taskforce /Rabies working Group (RWG) to drive the process of developing a National Rabies Elimination Plan was set up consisting key stakeholder institutions (Sierra Leone Animal Welfare Society.
Ministry of Health and Sanitation (MOHS) Freetown City Council (FCC) Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) World Health Organization (WHO), the Sierra Leone Police (SLP) and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) ). He furthered that, through a participatory planning process, as indicated above, a task force was established.
The Taskforce was working on a strategic plan for the control and subsequent elimination of Rabies. He concluded that, the program will import a diagnostic machine to diagnose dogs of Rabies to help it elimination. He concluded by admonishing Journalists to be ambassadors of animal protection by continuously sensitizing the public on the hazards of animal cruelty.
Dr Gudush Jalloh, Chief Veterinary Officer in the Ministry of Agriculture in his presentation, said that, Sierra Leone Animal Welfare Society was awarded the best Animal Welfare Society in West Africa and was awarded the Order of the Rokel by President Ernest Bai Koroma. He continued that, the Sierra Leone Animal Welfare Society has proposed legislation that they had forwarded to the Law Officers Department and the documents are currently in the desk of the Attorney General processing and for the subsequent enactment by the House of parliament for the protection of animal in the country.
Dr Jalloh concluded that, with the enactment of the proposed laws, animal cruelty would be drastically reduced as there are no effective animal protection laws in the country.
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Newspaper in Freetown, Sierra Leone.