• Friday, July 19, 2024
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Lagos gives 14-day ultimatum to illegal abattoirs to close down

2-Agege-Abattoir

In what is aimed at curbing unwholesome processed meat and meat products, the Lagos State government on Monday issued a 14-day ultimatum to operators of illegal abattoirs and slaughter slabs in the state to stop operation or faced prosecution.

Toyin Suarau, the commissioner for agriculture, said the action became necessary in order to guarantee wholesomeness in the process of meat consumed by Lagosians.

Suarau said it was necessary to monitor the whole process of meat handling from the animal markets to the abattoir, and even transportation, saying government had handled significantly the distribution aspect by introducing the Eko Refrigerated Meat Van, now used to transport meat rather than the former obnoxious meat transportation.

“Government will continue to close down illegal abattoirs and slaughter slabs, which are not hygienic and not in compliant with the relevant laws governing meat slaughtering in the state,’’ Suarau said.

According to Suarau, the issue of animal slaughtering is still a concern because a lot of animals must be inspected before and after slaughtering according to the meat inspection law.

“The danger with unrecognised abattoirs is that the animals slaughtered there are not inspected by veterinary professionals to detect the one that has diseased or pregnant ones because it is illegal to slaughter pregnant animal,’’ the commissioner said.

He noted that the illegal operators had two weeks to comply, and  listed such illegal abattoirs to include those located within military cantonments and barracks, where veterinary officers were denied access, stressing that government could no longer tolerate such illegal practice.

To Suarau, “We have veterinary officers deployed to all recognised abattoirs in the state to inspect and certify the meat hygienic for human consumption, and that is why we are advocating that all illegal abattoirs in state should be shut down.”

He listed authorised abattoirs in the state to include Abattoir and Lairage Complex Agege, Achakpo Mechanised Abattoir Ajegunle, Ologe Mechanised Abattoir Badagry (under construction), Matori Slaughter Slab, Itire Slaughter Slab, Ilaje Slaughter Slab, Ikorodu Slaughter Slab, Badagry Slaughter Slab, and Epe Slaughter Slab.

He reiterated that government would continue to clamp down and arrest operators of any abattoirs within the nooks and crannies of the state that was not officially recognised.