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FAO stresses the importance of developing agricultural animal health institutions in Yemen

FAO stresses the importance of developing agricultural animal health institutions in Yemen

08/03/2020

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) participated in the opening ceremony of the refresher training program organized by Yemen’s University of Sana'a through the College of Veterinary Medicine. The training focuses on field veterinary technicians and assistants of the Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation (MAI) and aims to equip 120 veterinary technicians with modern knowledge and necessary skills in the field of veterinary medicine. Also, the training will let MAI staff identify the most prevalent diseases and epidemics, along with how to prevent and control them, and examine and quarantine animals before distribution.

“Holding this refresher training program for community animal health workers confirms the extent of FAO’s interest in raising the capacities of livestock sector workers throughout Yemen’s governorates. Developing their skills, which we all believe is of the utmost importance in our joint work towards achieving the desired goal of preserving livestock health. Further, this course will help to protect animals from the threat of communicable diseases, as well as increasing their productivity and provision of healthy food citizens and consumers,” said Dr. Hussein Gadain, FAO Representative to Yemen

Dr. Gadain stressed in his remarks made at the ceremony that fighting hunger, enhancing food safety, people’s health, increasing food security and boosting agricultural production are among the top priorities of FAO in Yemen.

Referring to live animal selection and distribution mechanisms used by FAO, Dr. Gadain highlighted the importance of applied scientific and technical processes undertaken during these activities. Animal selection and distribution starts when technical specifications and health requirements are prepared by animal husbandry and health specialists, these standards are to ensure the good quality of outputs to farmers.

After that, a technical team composed of animal health specialists is assigned in coordination with the MAI’s General Department of Animal Health, and the team undertakes the selection process. The team examines them to make sure they are free of diseases, and then selected animals get immunized against important epidemic diseases and treated for internal and external parasites, and numbered to be quarantined for a period of 14 days under veterinary supervision.

Dr. Gadain also emphasized that the veterinary technical team conducts a confirmation test for the animals after the end of the veterinary quarantine period to ensure that they are free of diseases, and gives them a health certificate if they did not show any symptoms during the veterinary quarantine period. Ultimately, the animals are distributed after they undergo the applied health procedures mentioned earlier.

Dr. Gadain pointed out that FAO’s activities implemented in Yemen are based on a global network of technical experts and FAO is the world’s leading organization on issues related to the control and treatment of animal diseases, as well as on supporting small farmers and livestock owners. 

FAO has carried out several interventions related to livestock development and animal health promotion since 2018 including vaccinating over 3 million animals surmounting significant access restraints, distributing of more than 30 000 heads of sheep and goats in more than 10 governorates including Hajjah, Al Hudaydah, Taiz, Dhamar, Ibb, Saada, Abyan, Al Dhale'e, Lahj and Shabwa in coordination with the MAI’s General Department of Animal Health and Veterinary Quarantine, as well as providing 316 community animal health workers with veterinary bags containing essential supplies, with the aim of providing veterinary services in remote areas that are not accessible to animal health services. Also, FAO’s efforts have strengthened a nationwide network of epidemiological surveillance, and the reporting of diseases and animal epidemics to the MAI’s Directorate of Animal Health.

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