- Delta state House of Assembly members want to also pass the anti-grazing law in their domain with immediate effect
- Already, the lawmakers have kick-started the process and want to meet the September deadline of the Southern Governors Forum
- States like Ogun have also commenced the process as the forum prepares for a blanket ban from September
Asaba - Mr. Olisa Ifeajika, spokesman of Delta governor, on Tuesday, July 13 said that the Okowa-led administration had begun work toward enacting a law to prohibit open grazing in the state.
According to Ifeajika, who was on a Delta Broadcasting Service (DBS) live television programme monitored by Legit.ng, Delta State Livestock Breeding, Rearing, and Marketing Regulation Bill, 2021 is already before the House of Assembly.
Provisions of the highly-anticipated Bill
He said the Bill had scaled first reading at the parliament and expressed optimism that it would be passed and made ready for the governor’s assent before the September deadline set by the Southern Governors' Forum in their recent meeting in Lagos.
He commended the Speaker and members of the Assembly for their commitment towards ensuring that the Bill was passed on time.
“It is true that the Southern Governors' Forum had set a September deadline for states to pass their anti-open grazing laws.
“For us in Delta, we would have had ours passed and ready long ago if not for the strike embarked upon by the parliamentary workers.
“However, the Bill is already before the House and it has passed through first reading while the second reading has been slated for Wednesday.
“I am very optimistic that the Law will be ready in Delta before the September deadline set by the Southern Governors’ Forum.
“I must commend the Speaker and members of the House for their commitment in ensuring that the Bill gets the urgent attention it deserves.”
Ogun state House of Assembly already on track
In a related development, the Ogun State House of Assembly has passed Animal Grazing Regulation and Cattle Ranch Establishment Bill, 2020, recommending three years jail terms for offenders without any option.
Violators of the law will also forfeit their herds of cattle or livestock to the state government.
The Assembly said it passed the bill to address incessant clashes between herders and farmers in the state, noting that it had led to the loss of lives and property.
Recall that Benue state governor, Samuel Ortom recently commented on the decision of the Southern Governors Forum to enact laws to ban open grazing of livestock in the region.
The governor described the decision as a bold and patriotic move that will bring to an end the lingering crisis caused by armed herdsmen.
Governor Ortom's stance was contained in a statement sent to Legit.ng by his spokesman, Terver Akase, on Tuesday, July 6.