By: Kebba AF Touray
The Department of livestock in collaboration with key stakeholders validated the Animal Health Bill 2019 and a bill amending The Gambia Veterinary Council Act 2000.
The validation according to the stakeholders was meant to modernize veterinary legislation in order to enhance the performance of the Veterinary Services for an improved livestock sector in the country. The three days validation was held at a local hotel in Bijilo.
Mr. Abdou Ceesay, Chief Veterinary Officer and Director General of the Livestock Department, expressed gratitude to the participants for the valuable inputs they made during the course of validation. Which he said, “came on the heels of heated and healthy debate on the validated documents. “
While assuring that all the comments made were documented by the task force, with hope of ensuring proper reflection in the draft document, he tasked them to collectively work in ensuring the fulfilment of the draft document.
Ceesay hailed AU-IBAR( African Union of Inter Bureau on Animal Resources), Department of Livestock and the farmers for their valuable contributions towards the success of the validation workshop.
Dr. Bruce Mukanda, Technical Expert of AU-IBAR, hails the government of The Gambia for the successful hosting of what he referred to as a historic workshop and the participants for their active participation and significant contributions during the validation.
He said, “legislation is a pivotal tool for ensuring that the objectives in the veterinary domain are achieved”, such as the attainment of food security through livestock production, food safety through the control of animal diseases and enhancing the control of zoonotic and the assurance of human health and welfare and food safety and international trade.
Mukanda urged the Ministry of Agriculture to expedite the enactment of the draft document to become an enacted legislation to serve the purpose for which it was drafted.
The farmers who took part in the validation workshop, have congratulated the stakeholders for the foresight and assured their contribution in the fulfilment of the draft document once enacted to meet the targeted goals.