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Consideration is ongoing to push for a legislation to ban the consumption of hides, locally known as Pomo or kanda, in the country. The Nigerian Institute of Leather and Science Technology (NILEST) Zaria, disclosed this in Abuja on Sunday.
Prof. Muhammad Yakubu, Director-General of institute, in a media chat, said that the legislation was necessary to revive the comatose leather industry in Nigeria, adding that the habit of eating animals skin, which had no nutritional value, should be stopped in order to save the industry and boost the nation’s economy.
Said he: “To the best of my knowledge, Nigerians are the only people in the world that over value skin as food, after all Pomo has no nutritional value”.
The D-G said the institute, in collaboration with stakeholders in the industry, would approach National Assembly and state governments to bring out legislation banning Pomo consumption.
Recalled he: “At a point, there was a motion before the two chambers of the National Assembly, it was debated, but I don`t know how the matter was thrown away”.
Yakubu said the consumption of animals skin was partly responsible for the present comatose state of tanneries in Nigeria.
Observed he: “If we get our tanneries, our footwear and leather production working well in Nigeria, people will hardly get Pomo to buy and eat”.
The D-G also said that the current National Leather Policy had addressed some fundamental problems of the sector.
Stated Yakubu: “When implemented fully, it would turn around most of the comatose tanneries and ginger greater output in production’’.
He appealed to stakeholders to support the legislation and the national leather policy to revive the sector.
NILEST was set up to promote leather production as provided in the Agricultural Research Institute Act of 1975.
It conducts research into all aspects of production and products of leather and utilisation of local tanning materials in the country.