INAUGURATION SPEECH BY THE PERMANENT SECRETARY FMARD, DR BUKAR HASSAN, OF THE NATIONAL SECRETARIAT OF THE ANIMAL GENETIC RESOURCES (AnGR) NIGERIA, HELD ON 19TH SEPTEMBER, 2018, IN ABUJA.
I am pleased to be here with you this morning to inaugurate the Secretariat of the Animal Genetic Resources (AnGR) Nigeria.
We have inherited the great wealth and diversity of animal genetic resources from the generations before us and we must pay homage to them, as Charles Darwin did, when in 1868 he wrote of the “wonderful skill and perseverance shown by the men who have left an enduring monument of their success in the present state of our domesticated animals”.
These animals accompanied our forbearers’ into the world’s wide range of climates and ecosystems, where they proved themselves immensely adaptable. Today, faced with the needs of a growing population, changes in consumer demand, and the enormous challenge posed by climate change and emerging diseases, we need to once again call on this adaptability and potential to face an uncertain future.
To allow these resources to be lost through inaction would be disrespectful to both past and future generations and grossly irresponsible.
The inauguration of the AnGR Secretariat is a major milestone in Animal Agriculture in Nigeria.The Secretariat is an essential vehicle to coordinate domestication of Global Plan of action on AnGR. It is the institutional arrangements to identify and empower individuals skilled in logistics, planning, consensus building, document preparation, organizing meetings and convening consultations of various for action.
The Secretariat will require institutional, financial and administrative support from all relevant agencies including the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and we are positioned to fully support the Secretariat.
You will recall that the National Advisory Council (NAC) was launched on 21st February, 2018 with Terms of Reference (TOR) given to the various Sub-Committees
Your urgent attention is therefore required to improve the situation and move the council activities forward
It is my believe that the inauguration of the AnGR Secretariat today will expedite the machineries for putting the National Strategic and Action Plan for in place and invariably advance livestock sub-sector at both country and regional levels as regards AnGR.
The National Strategic and Action Plan for AnGR through the guidance and direction of NAC members will position livestock sub-sector as a key driver for 6% annual growth on Agriculture and provide a basis for mainstreaming livestock into national and regional agricultural investment plan within the frame work of Comprehensive African Agricultural Development Program (CAADP).
I urge the members of the Secretariat to consider as a matter of priority such critical areas as conservation, characterization and cross-breeding deemed by FAO/AU-IBAR as most considered in the implementation of Global Plan of Action at both National and international levels.
Finally, I can see that the caliber of members selected for this inauguration cuts across the stakeholders and key interests.
I implore members to ensure that targets, milestones, roles and responsibilities of stakeholders are effectively coordinated.
On this note, it is my privilege and honour to inaugurate the Secretariat and I wish you well in your assignments.
Thanks and God bless.