Benue government postpones implementation of anti-grazing law
- The Benue state government has postponed its plan to implement the anti-grazing law in the state
- Benue government said the October deadline for the implementation has been moved to November 1
- Stakeholders in the state urged government to step up enlightenment ahead of the deadline, in view of the importance of the law
Stakeholders in Benue on Monday agreed to begin the implementation of the 2017 Anti-Open Grazing Law in November.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the law, which was signed by Gov. Samuel Ortom in June, gave herdsmen a deadline of October to end open grazing and replace same with ranching from November 1.
The stakeholders formally endorsed the deadline at the expanded State Security Council meeting held at the Benue People’s House, Makurdi.
READ ALSO: Panic grips ministers as President Buhari reportedly plans to dissolve his cabinet
The stakeholders advised government to step up enlightenment ahead of the deadline, in view of the importance of the law.
They also agreed that the law was not targeted at any tribe or group of persons, and urged all Benue residents to support it.
NAN quotes Ortom as explaining that the expanded security meeting was to enlighten all stakeholders about the law and how it would be implemented.
Ortom further said that ranching was the best system of cattle rearing the world over, stressing that his administration was willing to support herdsmen or people willing to stay in Benue and ranch their cows.
He denied reports that government had given quit notice to herdsmen in Benue, explaining that they were free to remain in Benue “so long as they obey the law”.
READ ALSO: 25-year-old woman who escaped from Boko Haram reveals horrifying details of life in Sambisa
“The law does not provide that herdsmen should leave Benue; it only encourages herdsmen and any other individual, who wishes to rear livestock, to do so within ranches so as to minimise clashes between herdsmen and farmers.”
Speaking on behalf of the traditional rulers, Prof. James Ayatse, the Tor Tiv and Chairman, Benue State Council of Chiefs, commended the government for the steps so far taken toward implementing the law.
Ayatse, who was represented by Tor Kwande, Chief Ambrose Iortyer, urged herdsmen to embrace change as ranching was the best option worldwide.
PAY ATTENTION: Read the news on Nigeria’s #1 news app
In his remarks, the Benue Coordinator of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association (MACBAN), Alhaji Garus Gololo, said that his members were law-abiding citizens ready to support the anti-open grazing law.
Gololo said that his association was not behind the suit against the Benue Government over the law, explaining that Miyetti Allah Kautal Kohe leadership were behind the court action.
Legit.ng earlier reported that the cattle breeders association had said the the Benue Valley belongs to them.
The association which kicked against the anti-open grazing legislation enacted by the Benue state government said Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) protocol allows the Fulani community free movement into any part of Nigeria.
You can watch this Legit.ng video of APC chieftains in Benue blasting Peoples Democratic Party: