Joseph Odika, the founder of the Animal Protection Organization of Nigeria, which was founded in 2019. Before that, he was a polo sport publisher that decided to divert from reporting the conventional sport after he witnessed the death of a horse while playing polo, later changing the magazine he published to an equestrian welfare magazine. After a while (in 2019) Joseph stopped reporting polo as a sport and decided to develop a non-profit to fight for animal welfare and animal rights, because I realized welfare for animals was very poor in Nigeria, not just for horses, but for all animals. Joseph has since led several campaigns for the advancement of animal welfare in Nigeria, such as undertaking World Animal Day celebrations in Lagos and the city of Ibadan between 2019 and 2023. During these years, APON organized humane education campaigns in schools, partnering with stakeholders to carry out environmental clean-ups, staged protests, and several symposiums in commemoration of World Animal Day. Joseph has also led investigations and research to identify gaps in the welfare of wildlife and farmed animals.
Animal Protection Organization of Nigeria’s mandate is to end animal cruelty in Nigeria. Governed by board members and a steering committee, the organization has earned the government trust as a diligent and committed NGO working alongside government’s climate change ambition. Animal Protection Organization of Nigeria (APON) has staged several meetings and conferences with government agencies and stakeholders in the food system in advancement for a sustainable food system. The organization is bent on ensuring food of animal origin is reduced by half by 2050. Apart from this, APON is also working alongside the government of Nigeria to ensure animal welfare laws are implemented. Animal Protection Organization of Nigeria is a leading NGO in the fight against farmed animal cruelty in Nigeria and a lead organization for the promotion of veganism in Nigeria. In recent times, the organization got huge foreign support which has led to the purchase of land to build an average size shelter to help stray dogs and cats, in addition to equipment and cash donations.