Toure-Litse reiterated ECOWAS readiness to continue to collaborate with NANTS on strengthening regional livestock trade that would add value to economic development of the West African region.
Earlier, the National President of NANTS, Dr Ken Ukaoha said that the project would facilitate best practices in meat handling, processing, preservation, package and logistics
Ukaoha said that modernizing the traditional method of meat slaughtering and processing by subjecting the process under hygienic conditions remained a mirage due to the huge capital investment involved in building modern facilities.
According to him, the challenge was what informed the intervention by NANTS with the support of ECOWAS-RAAF and the Swiss Development Cooperation (SDC) to establish a modern abattoir.
“The abattoir will address the issues relating to animal slaughtering and ensure the sale of healthy meat to the public under very hygienic processing conditions that assures human health safety,’’ he said.
While saying that the project would create about 500 jobs, Ukaoha said that it would also boost economic activities in the FCT.
He said that the project would also serve as a training centre to butchers on international best practices, adding that some state governments had already indicated interest in similar project that would be facilitated by NANTS.
In his goodwill message, the Chairman of Gwagwalada Area Council, Alhaji Abu Giri commended the association for the project and said that it would serve as training and consultancy centre for the University of Abuja and other higher institutions within its environs.
Also speaking, the Aguma of Giri, Alhaji Musa Wakili said the project would go a long way in empowering youths in the community
Wakili urged other associations to emulate NANTS on such economic developmental projects.
Nigeria spends about $2.5bn annually on imported frozen meat, which has led to a loss of more than one million job opportunities.