South Sudanese Urged To Invest In Livestock

This article was last updated on May 25, 2022

The Eastern Equatoria State Minister, Hassan Urbano Alex says citizens must feel free to equally invest in the sector as the Ministry will not discriminate but will support those investing in the sector by soliciting appropriate funds for them in order to sustain their projects should they respond positively.

In June this year, the Ministry of Animal Resources and Fisheries announced the ongoing three-year project to improve animal production in Kapoeta region will cost three million South Sudanese Pounds.

The Kapoeta Integrated Development Centre, in Kapoeta region is a long term project aimed at improving animal production funded by the national government through Ministry of Animal Resources and Fisheries.

The project that comprises of livestock laboratory construction and construction of water dams, will accommodate a number of development activities ranging from importation or introduction of high quality of animals production from foreign countries for cross-breeding purposes with the local ones.

The project has been established on 24 kilometre square piece of land expected to cost three million South Sudanese Pounds.

The project targets improvement of animal products and quality production for commercial, domestic consumption and for beauty.

In February this year, the African Union Interafrican Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) Regional Coordinator Dr. Samuel Wakhusama announced that up to 250 million poor people in sub-Saharan Africa depend on livestock for their livelihoods.

Speaking during the Livestock Policy workshop in Torit, Dr. Samuel Wakhusama confided that it is now well established that the sub-Saharan Africa Livestock represents an average 30 percent of Agricultural Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and about 10 percent of the national GDP and up to 250 million poor people depend on livestock for their livelihoods.

This is even more in the IGAD region which host more than half of the continent’s livestock population and where livestock contribution to sometimes represents more than 50 percent of the national GDP.

He said that despite the great potential, the sector is seriously constrained by animal diseases, climate shocks and inadequate poor infrastructure and investments to enhance its contribution to the development of the African continent.

Since the 1980’s the livestock sector in Africa has been subjected to unfavourable government policies resulting from structural adjustment programmes (SAPs) with consequent under-funding and low investment from both public and private sectors, as well as poorly functioning institutional settings and weak implementation and enforcement capacity of policies, laws, regulations and standards.

In majority of African countries, the prevailing institutional environment is not conducive for the provision of affordable, accessible and sustainable quality veterinary services saying this is mainly as a result of the prevailing poor livestock or agricultural policy environment.

The Veterinary Governance (VET-GOV) Programme, launched early 2012 by IGAD, contributes to the overall strategic objective of AU-IBAR, whose main theme is to ‘Improve contribution of livestock to food security and safety, economic growth and wealth creation in Africa.’

The programme’s specific objective is to improve the institutional environment at national and regional levels so to subsequently provide effective and efficient animal health services in Africa.

The VET-GOV is to promote the establishment and strengthening of livestock policy hubs at the regional level following the success of this concept achieved by involving both government actors and civil society to be very effective.

In February, the Kapoeta North county Commissioner, Lokai Iko Loteyo commented that Livestock Commercialisation will provide a sustainable solution to the ongoing food insecurity among the communities in the greater Kapoeta region.

He spoke to Gurtong a week after his county authorities launched a new livestock market centre at Riwoto headquarters, stating that if livestock production is commercialized it would contribute to the reduction of cattle rustling practices.

The leader said there is a need to respond to the current hunger situation as he appealed to both state and national government to urgently provide emergency food aid for his community following crop failure in the last harvest.

The established markets aim to increase physical access and safe ground for commercial transactions by Kapoeta pastoralists.

According to SNV livestock sales statistics at the counties, the two markets have increased commercial off-take rate from 50 per day (approx. EUR 8, 500) in 2010 to over 300 per day; accruing gross income of at least EUR 51,500 per day in the last 2 years.

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