The Kogi State Government has warned its citizens to stay away from beef consumption following the mysterious death of no fewer than 20 cows in Lokoja.
It was gathered that the warning became necessary as no one could emphatically state the cause of the death of the cows, but government sources said the animals might have been poisoned.
As a result, the Kogi State Government warned the public to stay away from consuming beef for the next one week.
The state Director of Veterinary Services, Dr Salau Tarawa, who gave the warning on Thursday, said upon receiving the report, officials of the ministry swung into action and retrieved some of the dead cows that were discovered in the market.
Tarawa said other cows were said to have been taken to Osara, Ajaokuta, Obajana, Kotonkarfe and Kakanda for sale to unsuspecting members of the public.
He explained that the Ministry of Agriculture was collaborating with security agencies to invite the herders involved for questioning, while appropriate action would be taken against them.
The Permanent Secretary of the State Ministry of Agriculture, Mallam Abdulganiyu, appealed to the general public to cooperate with the ministry to address the situation without compromising their health.
Speaking on the development, Head, Agro Rangers Unit Kogi State Command, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, Bayode Emmanuel, said the cows were discovered by some officials of the unit in Lokoja.
Emmanuel stated, “The cows emerged from the back of the state secretariat complex where they had grazed. All of a sudden, they started behaving funny, slumped and died within minutes.
“Upon interrogation, the Fulani herdsman said he was coming out with them after grazing before the incident happened.”
The state Public Relations Officer, NSCDC, Alex Agiri, said the state Commandant, Suleiman Mafara, had directed a thorough investigation into the matter to ascertain where the dead cows had grazed and also prevent the possible sale and consumption of the infected beef in the state.
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