Ondo State Governor Rotimi Akeredolu says the decision by the 17 Southern Nigerian Governors to ban open grazing in the region is irreversible and will be enforced with vigour.
The governor who stated this on Thursday also lashed out at the country’s Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami describing as most unfortunate his inability to distil issues as expected of a Senior Advocate.
Mr Akeredolu was reacting to comments by the Minister who had described the ban on open grazing in the southern region of the country as unconstitutional, as it infringes on the right of citizens to move freely across the country. Malami had on Wednesday compared the ban to banning all spare parts dealers in the Northern parts of the country.
“It is most unfortunate that the AGF is unable to distil issues as expected of a Senior Advocate. Nothing can be more disconcerting,” Mr Akeredolu said in a statement he personally signed.
He continued, “this outburst should, ordinarily, not elicit response from reasonable people who know the distinction between a legitimate business that is not in any way injurious and a certain predilection for anarchy. Clinging to an anachronistic model of animal husbandry, which is evidently injurious to harmonious relationship between the herders and the farmers as well as the local populace, is wicked and arrogant.
“Comparing this anachronism, which has led to loss of lives, farmlands and property, and engendered untold hardship on the host communities, with buying and selling of auto parts is not only strange. It, annoyingly, betrays a terrible mindset.
“Mr Malami is advised to approach the court to challenge the legality of the Laws of the respective States banning open grazing and decision of the Southern Governor Forum taken in the interest of their people. We shall be most willing to meet him in Court.
“The decision to ban open grazing stays. It will be enforced with vigour.”
By Abel Ejikeme