Prof. Sulyman Abdulkareem, the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin (UNILORIN), has said that the university, with support from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), is embarking on a poultry project worth N600 million.
Abdulkareem made this disclosure on Tuesday while inaugurating the Mycoplasma Diagnostic and Research Laboratory of the Department of Veterinary Microbiology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of the university.
The Vice-Chancellor, who was represented by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research, Technology and Innovation), Prof. Mikhail Buhari, noted that the CBN came up with the idea following the ban on importation of poultry products into the country.
Abdulkareem said that the CBN invited selected universities to Abuja for presentation and the University of Ilorin was among the selected universities and the first to submit its report which the CBN said would be used as a benchmark for others.
He said that the CBN representative recently visited the University of Ilorin at Ganmo – Amoyo, and noted that the location was an ideal place to bring together all aspects of the university’s agro-business.
Abdulkareem said there would be a strong collaboration with the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine when the place was fully developed, as there was no way one could talk of agro-business without talking about veterinary medicine.
In his response, Dr Isaac Olorunshola of the Department of Veterinary Microbiology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, lauded the Vice-Chancellor for his active participation in making the project a success.
Olorunshola noted that the laboratory was put in place in collaboration with the University of Edinburgh, Scotland.
He said that the purpose of the laboratory was for research, training of students and for collaborative work within and outside the faculty.
Olorunshola said it was especially for colleagues in Medicine to investigate Atypical Pneumonia (non-conventional Pneumonia) in children under the age of five years.
He added that mycoplasma organism cut across human and animal growth which needed to be studied.
Olorunshola explained that mycoplasma organism caused Atypical Pneumonia in children and could cause neonatal death and also infertility in women and men of the reproductive stage.
He said that the organism could cause chronic respiratory diseases that could lead to mortality of 50 to 60 per cent in an animal like chicken.