FG certifies Oyo farm free of Avian Influenza

Federal Government

The Federal Department of Veterinary Services says a farm owned by NPG Farm Enterprises in Ibadan has been certified free of Avian Influenza.
Dr Florence Kakulu, the Federal Epidemiology Officer, National Animal Disease Information and Surveillance, announced this in Ibadan on Wednesday evening.
Kakulu told newsmen that results from the samples taken from the farm and sent to NVRI in Jos for examination were negative, adding that  customers were now  free to patronise and consume the farm’s products.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Oyo State Government had on Wednesday evening re-opened the hatchery of the farm located in Oluyole area of Ibadan.
The hatchery was re-opened by Dr Kareem Adebayo, the Avian Influenza Desk Officer in the Oyo State Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources.
The state government had on Saturday sealed up the hatchery following suspicion of outbreak of AI at the farm located in Odeda Local Government Area of Ogun.
Officials of the Ogun government had also visited the farm to carry out an investigation.
Adebayo told newsmen that the state government had taken the proactive step to forestall any outbreak of AI.
He said: “When we received the information, we rushed down to the farm to seal it up to prevent the spread of the disease in the state.
“We took samples of the products and sent them  to the Nigeria Veterinary Research Institute, Jos,  for comprehensive examination to determine their  status.
“Today, we received the results of the examination and it was negative. This means that the birds at NPG farms are good for rearing and their products fit for consumption.’’
He stated that the state government had re-opened the hatchery for normal business transactions for the firm’s products.
Dr Segun Makanjuola, a representative of Poultry Association of Nigeria in Oyo State, said that NVRI had subjected the samples to Serology and Virological test.
Meanwhile, the management of NPG Farms Enterprises has solicited compensation from government to make up for the over N10 million loss it claimed to have recorded from the exercise carried out over suspicion of AI.
Sakirat Okewole, a Public Health Scientist and a co-founder of the farm, told journalists that more than half of the 50,000 birds stocked by the firm were lost to the exercise.
She said that the 30,000 birds hatched for sale on Monday could not be sold as a result of the closure of the farm’s hatchery in Ibadan.
Okewole said: “When we noticed unusual loss of birds on our farm few weeks ago, we took samples to different scientific laboratories to ascertain the cause and the results confirmed the birds were negative to AI.
“Less than a week ago, people from Ogun State Ministry visited the farm to put mitigation methods in place. They disinfected and depopulated more than half of the birds.
“Also, Oyo State Ministry came to seal-up our hatchery in Ibadan over suspicion that some of the eggs in the hatchery had   been infected with the virus.’’
Okewole, who expressed delight at the result from NVRI, said the farm had lost thousands of birds to the exercise.
She solicited for compensation from the Federal Government, saying this would encourage new entrants into the business and portray government as responsive.