Expanding the One Health agenda - sustainable livelihoods, zoonotic disease and gender in Nigeria
Badejo, Adedamola Folasade
Livestock production is central to the livelihoods of millions of people in Nigeria, and indeed across the continent. Understanding how livestock based economies function and the issues that constrain them has long been an important task for actors interested in supporting rural development. In recent years, the One Health agenda has provided a new impetus for studying and tackling the interconnections between human, animal and environmental. Whilst this is welcome, it tends to be selective in its modus operandi of intersectoral collaboration as advocated. This new risk repeats the tendencies of earlier scholarship in understanding rural animal production systems as a vertical system. In particular, gender analysis of addressing the growing threats of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) is lacking in One Health as evidenced in the findings from the study areas of Kachia Grazing Reserve and the Jos Plateau. There is thus a need to illustrate the importance of integrating gender equality into the One Health concept of programmes especially in pastoralist areas. Through the use of a qualitative approach of eliciting needed information by the use of a range of qualitative methods at the community and household levels, this thesis, based on three case studies provides substantial new empirical contributions to this debate. Specificially, chapter four, by exploring the strategies employed by the study population to cope with, as well as to build their resilience to the inadequacies of the Kachia Grazing Reserve, argues that these inadequacies affect gender, gender relations, and livelihoods. As a reinforcement to these assertions, chapter five explores the role of women self help groups in the KGR and argues that these self help groups could be used as instruments in propelling the One Health concept in pastoral areas like that of the KGR. Lastly, chapter six explores the effect of conflict and violence on gender, gender relations and livelihoods in the Jos Plateau and examines how timely and effective delivery of One Health could act as a conflict resolution in conflict and violence inflicted pastoralist areas of the Jos Plateau. This thesis, in a way, gives possible explanation to the reticence of gender in One Health. Thus, in recognition of the potentials of the One Health concept, and in considering the realities on ground and the importance of integrating gender equality in its programme planning and delivery, the analysis of data from the three case studies of this thesis brings into focus the ‘how’ and ‘why’ of gender analysis affects delivery of One Health programmes in local pastoralists communities.