Kwara shuts abattoir to probe poisonous meat allegation

Kwara shuts abattoir to probe poisonous meat allegation

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The Kwara State government, on Sunday, ordered the temporary shutdown of the abattoir at Mandate Market in Ilorin, Ilorin West Local Government Area following the alleged sale of poisonous cow meat in the market.

The government, in a statement by the  Ministry of Environment, also ordered the immediate general cleaning and fumigation of the abattoir so as to cleanse it of the suspected meat poisoning.

The statement signed by the Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Dr. Abubakar Ayinla, said the abattoir would remain shut till Wednesday.

Ayinla said the decision was part of the efforts to protect members of the public after a non-governmental organisation, Kwara Monitoring Group, raised the alarm that meat from 33 cows, which allegedly died of poisoning had found its way to the market for sale to the public members.

The group, in an unsigned statement issued early on Sunday, alleged that: “Over 33 cows were suspected to be poisoned and died immediately but surprisingly, the dead animals were slaughtered and distributed out to butchers to be sold. It happened along Atere Road(that leads to Al Hikma Campus) right inside the College of Arabic and Islamic Studies, Ilorin.

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“It is our prayer that the concerned ministry and agency will take immediate action as nobody knows whose family will end up buying and consuming such poisoned meat  being sold in the market.”

In response to the allegation, the state government, in a statement signed by the Commissioner for Health, Dr Amina El-Imam, and his counterpart in the Ministry of Agriculture, Toyosi  Adebayo, said it had deployed a team of officials to the market, adding that they seized the suspected poisonous meat.

The state said the seized meat had been taken for laboratory test.

The statement was titled: “Kwara govt team arrives Mandate Market, confiscates suspected beef.”

It read, “Kwara State Government officials and experts have arrived at the Mandate Market in Ilorin to activate measures to protect the public amid rumours of poisoned cow meat.

“On the team were the Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Toyosi Thomas-Adebayo; Commissioner for Health, Dr. Amina Ahmed El-Imam; officials from the Ministry of Environment, including the Executive Secretary of the Kwara State Environmental Protection Agency, Mrs Folorunsho Idayat, and officials from the Ministry of Health, including the Permanent Secretary, Alhaja Afusat Ibrahim, and the Director of Public Health, Dr. Oluwatosin Fakayode, among others.

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“The government has immediately confiscated all the suspected meats for laboratory tests and confirmation of claims after initial engagements with the Mandate Market stakeholders.

“Further information will be given as may become necessary.

“The government urges members of the public to be calm while the team establishes the truth of the rumour of poisoned meat. It also commends the leadership of the market for their cooperation so far.”

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