Prof Anselm Onyimonyi of the Department of Animal Science, University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN) has said protecting animal rights will help to ensure national security.
Onyimonyi said this in Nsukka on Tuesday in a lecture titled “Animal Right Abuses in Nigeria: Implications to national security and citizen’s well-being” during Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) Nsukka chapter 2019 dinner.
He said in developed countries dogs were used by security agencies to sniffer dangerous substances like drugs, narcotic and landmines thereby assisting security agencies to do their work.
” In United States of America for instance, military war dogs are used to sniffer out landmines which prevents death such landmines by the enemy will have caused.
“In many developed countries security agencies used sniffer dogs in airports to detect cocaine and other hard drugs traffickers.
“We all heard the news report of how a dog named teacher in Borono state disarmed a Boko Haram suicide bomber who is heading to a wedding to cause havoc, thereby saving many lives,” he said.
The professor of Animal Science said animal rights were rights conferred on animals by law so as to prevent human cruelty in raising animals
“The law, religion and nature are all against cruelty against animals. In traditional Igbo society, there still exist conservative protocols that ensure that some species of animals do not go into extinction.
“For instance in Awka in Anambra State monkey are not haunted while Iin Idemili in Anambra and parts of Awgu in Enugu State is forbidden for someone to kill a python,” he said.
Onyimonyi who is also a lawyer argued that failure to comply with some laws in abattoir in the country had resulted in unwholesome meat from animals slaughtered some abattoirs.
“In some abattoir animals for slaughter are made to undergo severe torture thus resulting in the release of stress hormones like adrenaline and epinephrine into the meat.
“These hormones that pose serious health risk to consumers are as result of abuse of animal rights by subjecting them to torture during slaughter.
“If many meat consumers will visit some abattoirs and see sorry state of the place where animals the consume are slaughtered many will decide to stop eating meat,”he said.
The former President of UNN Senior Staff Club noted that, the neglect of statutory provisions on animal rights and failure to keep to traditional dictates on the welfare of animals had created a serious gap between Nigerians and animals.
“This gap is not healthy as it poses security and health challenges on the overall well being of the citizens,” he said.
The university Don disclosed that, recent survey conducted by his team in Nsukka town showed there were 270 stray dogs, describing such situation as catastrophic if there is any outbreak of rabies.
In a remark, the Chairman of NBA Nsukka chapter Mr Matthew Iyamanbhor thanked members for their support and solidarity to his administration and pledged that his administration would continue to carry everybody along.
Iyamanbhor expressed happiness on the good relationship between Bar and Bench and called for its sustenance.
The NBA chairman described the topic of the lecture by Onyimonyi as apt especially now the country was facing security challenges.
“From the lecture we have known that ensuring animals rights will not only ensure wholesome meat for citizens but will also assist security agencies to ensure national security,” he said.