Some chiefs, who keep donkeys in the Northern Region, have appealed to the government to strictly enforce the ban on their skin trade in the country to protect their livelihoods.

They also called for an enforcement that would formalise the ban by issuing a Presidential Decree to ensure strict adherence.

Naa Zakaria Dawuni, Warrior (Kamonnaa) to the Chief of Tutingli, who spoke at a News conference in Tamale, said enforcing the ban would also ensure that the donkeys remained in their communities to support the socio-economic and cultural livelihood activities of their owners.

The News conference was organised by Development and Environmental Protection Organisation (DONYAEPA), an NGO, with support from The Donkey Sanctuary, United Kingdom as part of its advocacy to save the lives of donkeys’ owners, and the communities at large.

Most donkey owners in the northern part of the country are peasant farmers, who depend largely on them for livelihood as the donkeys perform vital tasks including; helping convey produce from farms to markets.
In recent times, the killing of donkeys was on the rise in the northern part of the country, a situation, which threatened the livelihoods of owners and the communities at large.

The government, therefore, has placed a ban on donkeys’ skin trade to salvage the unsustainable loss of donkeys in the country as they cannot be farmed or bred the same way as production of animals because the species are not well suited to this kind of production.

Even though the ban has stopped mass killings of donkeys for their skins, there are still people, who roam the communities to buy donkeys and kill them for their skins for export.

Naa Dawuni demanded that the law enforcement agencies should take drastic measures against those, who buy donkeys’ skins for export.

He said “We should be vigilant on the vehicles that transport the donkeys skins, we should be checking the borders and the harbours to arrest those, who export the skins outside Ghana.”

Mr Amadu Hudu, Executive Director of DONYAEPA appealed to the media to expose those involved in the trade to enable the security agencies to take quick action against them.

Mr Hudu said “Transporting the skins out of Ghana is encouraging thefts, encouraging woeful killing of the donkeys, enhancing school drop-out, migration, extreme poverty, hunger, creating minor conflicts at homes and above all, creating social vices in the rural communities in northern Ghana.”

He reiterated that “In addition to the risks faced by losing donkeys, the illegal cross border trade brings significant disease risks” hence need to effectively enforce the ban to avoid such diseases.

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