Women Empowerment Initiative (WEIN), a non-governmental organization, says it has collaborated with WASH Coordination Project (WCP) in Bauchi state to train 35 butchers on hygienic practices and prevention of meat contamination.
Mrs Hajara Pisaghi, Coordinator of WEIN, stated this at a workshop for the training held in Bauchi on Tuesday.
She observed that butchers in Yelwa community at the outskirt of the state capital were carrying out their trade without a reliable source of clean water and modern waste disposal facility, saying they were operating in a filthy and unsafe location.
“Imagine an abattoir without a functional borehole, a modern waste disposal facility and clean environment. What do you think will happen?”
“Certainly, the operators will have no option other than to rely on a nearby stream contaminated with human faeces for their water supply and this will expose many consumers to the risk of water-borne diseases, such as cholera”, she said.
She also called for collaboration between Yelwa Butchers Association and WEIN to protect consumers from eating unwholesome meat.
In his remarks, Malam Abdullahi Yusuf, the representative of the state Environmental Protection Agency, advised butchers in the state to adopt public-private-partnership (PPP) approach in the running of their businesses.
“I want you to replicate what your colleagues in other parts of the country do, where an individual or group will construct and equip an abattoir with all the required facilities, and charge fees for every animal slaughtered there; you can partner with such people,” Yusuf explained.
Earlier, spokesman of Yelwa Butchers Association, Alhaji Abubakar Barde, had appealed to the State Water Board and Environmental Protection Agency, to provide the abattoir with clean water and a sewage facility.
“The law establishing relevant agencies makes it mandatory to equip our abattoirs with water and sanitary facilities,” he said.
News Agency of Nigeria reports that the workshop, funded by USAID, with support from WASH Coordination Project WCP, attracted butchers from Birshi, Lushi, Yelwan Makaranta, Sabon Kaura, Rafin Zurfi and Gwallameji all within the state capital.
High-point of the training was the constitution of a seven-man committee on water, sanitation and hygiene (WASHCOM) by Yelwa Butchers Association, to prevent consumption of contaminated meat.