(CMR) Nigerian officials revealed that they seized thousands of donkey penises that were about to be exported to Hong Kong at the Lagos international airport in June. The value of the coveted parts is estimated at around 200 million Naira ($478,000; £416,000). Donkeys are facing extinction in Nigeria.
The parcels containing the donkey male genitals were falsely declared as cow genitals. However, export officers discovered that it was donkey genitals and seized the shipment of approximately 7000 penises. A total of 16 sacks of the genitals were seized.
An investigation has been launched to find out more information about the seized items, ABC News reported.
According to the report, although the seizure of donkey genitals meant for export from Nigeria is rare, donkey skins are known to be frequently exported or smuggled out of the country. In July, the Nigerian customs seized $116,000 worth of donkey skins being smuggled into the country from neighboring Niger.
Nigeria is trying to curb the export of donkey skins which has drastically diminished the country's donkey population. Nigerian senators in 2021 proposed to ban the killing of donkeys and the export of their skins.
Lawmakers said such a ban on killing donkeys would further curb the export of donkey skins and genitals to countries like China, where the skins are used in popular traditional medicines. That proposed legislation has not yet been passed into law.
“The major beneficiary in this trade is the donkey (skin) merchants in China. This animal is facing extinction (in Nigeria), and it is an animal you cannot breed in large numbers because of the very low rate of fertility,” Muhammad Datti, one of the federal lawmakers supporting the proposed ban, said.