The Donkey Skin Processors, Marketers and Exporters Association of Nigeria (DSPMEAN), has faulted the bill seeking to prohibit the killing and exportation of donkeys or their carcasses.
The bill has passed a second reading in the House of Representatives.
National Vice Chairman of the Association, Ifeanyi Dike, at a media parley in Abuja, said the bill was done in ignorance and capable of killing the local investors in the donkey business.
He said rather than initiate a bill to ban exportation of donkeys, the government should be more proactive to regulate the industry and stop the smuggling which has sabotaged the business.
Dike pointed out that between 2012 and 2018, Nigeria has cumulatively lost in revenue over $2 billion annually, totaling over $7 billion in six years to the smuggling of donkey parts to other countries especially China.
He explained that with modern technology; donkey business has the potential to deepen the efforts being made to diversify the economy and add value to the economy of Nigeria with the multiplier effects.
The bill sponsored by Garba Muhammed (APC-Kaduna), seeks to address the threat of donkeys going into extinction, and to preserve its aesthetic, ecological, historical, recreational and scientific values to the nation.
Dike however, said that his association has all the modern technological equipment to breed, process, market and export donkey skin in a manner that will dispel the fear of extinction as suggested by the bill.
He added that the menace of smuggling is caused by inadequate regulations even as he called on government to make the business very viable by setting rule for ranching of donkeys and also stop the indiscriminate slaughtering of donkeys by unauthorized persons to avoid extinction.
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