Could you summarize your career?
I started work as veterinarian following graduation from the University of Ibadan. I have always loved small animal medicine and it was this specialty I chose. I later undertook a Master’s program in small animal soft tissue surgery from which I graduated in 1997. In 2003, I became a member of the College of Veterinary Surgeons in Nigeria and, in 2004, I established my own practice, Truthmiles Animal Hospital. I am currently CEO and Medical Director. I have continued to develop my knowledge by attending clinical conferences all over the world and undertaking additional training, for instance, in ultrasonography. I am hoping to start a fellowship program in surgery at the College of Veterinary Surgeons.
What is your day job?
Day to day, I attend to clinical cases and perform surgery. I’m also heavily involved in client communication and the administration of the hospital and a second hospital we have recently opened in a different part of Lagos. I spend time daily working for the associations I am involved with. Meeting my obligations to them is very important to me.
You are WSAVA Member Representative for SAVAN. What does this involve?
As the country's liaison, I serve as a bridge between WSAVA and SAVAN, ensuring that all of SAVAN’s members are up to date with the WSAVA’s activities and benefit from its resources. I also represent Nigeria at the WSAVA assembly meetings.
How does membership of the WSAVA benefit SAVAN members?
A great deal, because it enables us to be members of a global community. This is helping us to improve our service delivery in particular through the face to face and online CE we benefit from and the many other programs the WSAVA is running.
What are the key challenges and opportunities currently facing veterinarians in Nigeria?
Veterinarians in Nigeria struggle to work to the highest standards because of the inherent challenges in our system. We lack equipment, medications and the social system necessary to support the service we offer. This has a severe impact on animal welfare and is proving difficult for us to deal with. The weak economy in Nigeria also impacts the financial circumstances of our clients and this, of course, affects the profitability of our veterinary practices. However, it’s not all bad news as most practices are recording new registrations as more and more people start to keep pets.
You are President Elect of the CVA. What are your plans for your presidency?
My plan is to re-engineer the CVA and change the game completely. In order to involve members of the CVA in the wider global veterinary community, I hope to strengthen its existing partnerships, foster new ones and bridge the gaps that exist in its current operations. The CVA currently operates at a community level in societies, addressing peoples’ livelihoods, for instance, their livestock resources and working equids, as well as companion animals. I intend to consolidate its goals and to ensure that it becomes well-known in all English-speaking countries and beyond. I’ll also be looking to ensure that we improve the benefits it offers its members.