Expose people who slaughter donkeys, calls deputy minister

By Polycarp Machira , The Guardian
Published at 09:30 AM May 20 2024
Deputy Minister for Livestock and Fisheries Alexander Mnyeti
Photo: Guardian Reporter
Deputy Minister for Livestock and Fisheries Alexander Mnyeti

DEPUTY Minister for Livestock and Fisheries Alexander Mnyeti has called on the public to expose people who engage in banned donkey trade and slaughter.

He reaffirmed the government’s commitment to save donkeys in the country, noting that donkeys –also known as beasts of burden-have served in some of the most challenging conditions.

Mnyeti made the statement in Dodoma while officiating at the National Donkey Day. He said the government is aware that that there is a real risk of donkeys falling into extinction if they continue to be slaughtered for their skins, meat and other parts.

“Anybody engaging in illegal donkey business risks legal measures including jail term as the government strives to help save the friendly and useful animals,” he said. 

He called on stakeholders to increase public education on the importance of the animala in the country, adding that just like other animals, donkeys also deserve decent treatment.

The deputy minister stressed the importance of donkeys as working animals and not meant for consumption.

“We have seen donkeys working everywhere; of late they work in the mines too but unfortunately they are unfairly slaughtered and their meat sold,” he said.

According to Mnyeti, this year’s theme ‘Year of Donkey Species Preservation in Africa’ reflects on the agreement reached during Pan-African Donkey Forum held in  Dar es Salaam in June 2022 where African countries banned slaughtering of donkey.

The World Donkey Day is celebrated on 8th May every year in dedication to recognizing donkey and bringing attention to their many amazing characteristics.

The celebration in was organized by Inades Foundation Tanzania, a non-governmental organization affiliated to the international association of Inades Formation and operating in Dodoma Region in collaboration with the Arusha-based Arusha Society For the Protection of Animals (ASPA).

Speaking during at a conference ahead of the Donkey Day, Inades Formation Tanzania Managing Director Mbarwa Kivyo said Tanzania like other African countries has stopped donkey business, terming it a good move but should also declare donkeys as being the verge of extinction.

“Let the government include donkey among the endangered species of animals in the country as part of the efforts to expand the animals’ protection”, he said.

ASPA Chief Executive Officer Livingstone Masija echoed the same sentiment, noting that donkey is the second profitable domestic animal after cow.

He applauded the government for the ban on slaughtering donkey saying.

“Through the ban the government has acknowledged the importance of the animal that helps rural based population to improve their economic welfare and economy,” he said.

Donkey Day is celebrated as a show of respect for one of the most enduring and respectable animals that has survived and thrived even in areas with harsh climates and tough terrains.

Donkeys are known for their endurance and persistence. This makes them respected and loved animals.