The documentary revealed the challenges faced by vultures as they are being traded as common commodity in the wildlife market, especially in the South-West and Northern parts of Nigeria. It also shows the threats being faced in the hands of poachers, wildlife traffickers, traditional medicine practitioners and people who perceive, the bird species as evil or ugly, thereby persecuting them.
Speaking at the forum, NCF Director-General, Dr. Muhtari Aminu-Kano, expressed gratitude to partners and ‘Save Vulture Ambassadors’ for making the documentary a success, adding that it’s part of measures to intensify the national campaign on vulture conservation in Nigeria.x
Aminu-Kano said the campaign translates to the survival of the eco-system and other species alike. He implored the public to team up with the foundation in the war against vultures going into extinction, stressing that ony few Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) can’t handle the issues alone.
On his part, Director of Technical Programme, (NCF) Dr. Joseph Onoja, who spoke on ‘the journey so far’ explained that the foundation began its campaign for the protection of the birds since 2016.
He listed seven African vultures facing threat of extinction in Nigeria as Egyptian, Gruffon, Hooded vulture, Lapet-faced vulture, White-backed vulture, White-headed vulture and Palm-nut vulture.
According to him, identified belief-based use has been the major force driving vultures’ population into extinction. He stated that “if we wipe out vultures, and prevent them from carrying out their nature-imposed sanitary responsibility, we open up ourselves to outbreak of diseases.”
Onoja said the foundation would continue to collaborate with market women, traditional medicine practitioners and law enforcement agencies in its campaign to save vultures from extinction.
The forum attracted ‘Save Vultures Campaign Ambassadors’, Frank Donga, a comedian/actor; Mariam Longe, co-host of YourView on TVC and Tito da fire, a musician among others.x