FG says it will ban 'ponmo'

In order to revitalize tanneries, the federal government claims it is putting up legislation that would outlaw the consumption of animal skin, known locally as ponmo.

On Sunday in Abuja, Muhammad Yakubu, director-general of the Nigerian Institute of Leather and Science Technology (NILEST), made this statement.

Yakubu claimed that the legal action was required to resurrect the nation's dead leather sector. On the 29th and 30th of September, Nigerians both in the private and public sector will converge in the UK to chart a new course for Nigeria's economic fortunes. The opportunities in the agriculture sector will be once again spelt out and the animal skin value chain can be a notable real investment drive at what is going to be the biggest economic summit of Nigerians in recent years.

To save the industry and strengthen the economy of the country, he suggested ending the practice of eating animal skin, which has little nutritional value.

The director-general added that the institute, in collaboration with stakeholders in the industry, would approach the national assembly and state governments to bring out legislation banning “ponmo” consumption.

“To the best of my knowledge, Nigerians are the only people in the world that overvalue skin as food, after all, Ponmo has no nutritional value,” he said.

“At one 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.”

He claims that the current status of the tanneries in Nigeria is mostly due to the consumption of animal skin.

He added that several basic issues facing the industry had been addressed under the present National Leather Policy.

People in Nigeria won't have any trouble finding pomo to buy and consume if we get our tanneries, footwear, and leather industry running smoothly, according to Yakubu.

"When completely implemented, it would revive the majority of the paralyzed tanneries and increase productivity."

In order to revitalize the industry, Yakubu pleaded with stakeholders to support the legislation and the national leather policy.

According to the Agricultural Research Institute Act of 1975, NILEST was established to encourage the manufacture of leather.

images 31 FG says it will ban 'ponmo'
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