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The Veterinary Council of Nigeria held its 107th regular meeting and a retreat at the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, Kuru (NIPSS) on Thursday, 8 May2014.

The aim of the retreat is to acquaint the delegates of the veterinary Council of Nigeria with the key ingredients of policy, vision and strategy as a necessity for strengthening professionalism in a highly competitive world system.

Welcoming the delegates to NIPSS, the Director-General Professor Tijjani Muhammad-Bande, OFR, thanked the Council for choosing to have the retreat at NIPSS to discuss matters pertaining to their work. NIPSS DG said what they have done is part of the mandate of NIPSS. The Director General noted that if all Nigerians can take things seriously as the Veterinary Council has done, Nigeria will be a better place.

Professor Tijjani Muhammad-Bande speaking further noted that agriculture is very important and should not be left as secondary in Nigeria. Professor Aja Akpuru-Aja in a paper he presented at the occasion titled “Policy, vision and Strategy and the way forward for the Veterinary Council of Nigeria”, noted that mankind’s survival depends on the veterinarians and that makes the profession a highly dignified one. He said in a setting of National and Global competitiveness, an organized Retreat should be a forward looking platform for reflection in the concept of an organisation or institution, reflect on the journey so far; the challenges and the way forward. Prof. Aja advised the delegates to be conscious of innovative breakthrough. He advised against having the same result year in year out. Aja emphasized that professionals in the area of veterinary medicine should have passion for policy continuity, adding that successions should not truncate policies. He strongly advised that this body should guard against policy summersault and lack of continuity. He advised them to consider issues based on merit. Professor Aja advised the gathering that whatever the adopted vision of the Veterinary Council of Nigeria is, a plausible smart one is “ensure that veterinary education and practice in Nigeria is among the best in the world”.

The Veterinary Council of Nigeria was formed in 1952 as a regulatory body for veterinary medical practice among other functions which include determining what standards of knowledge and skill to be attained by persons seeking to be registered to practice veterinary medicine in Nigeria; the Council also performs the function of raising standards of the profession from time to time as circumstances may permit. The Council also licences the practitioners, accreditate faculties/colleges of veterinary medicine, carry out registration of members as well as training of members.

The Council meets twice a year. The Registrar of the Council is Dr. Markus A. Avong, while the President is Professor Garba Hamidu Sharubutu, mni. Membership of the Council is drawn from all the 36 States of the Federation, 8 elected members, and representation from each of the accredited faculty/colleges. In all the Council have 55 members.