Southern senators back governors, say open grazing is outdated

SENATORS from the southern part of Nigeria have expressed support for 17 governors of the region who agreed to ban open grazing and movement of cattle by foot.

The senators, in a joint statement issued by their chairman Opeyemi Bamidele and Secretary Matthew Urhoghide, said the system of open grazing by herders in the country was outdated.

The statement noted that the ban would help to address growing insecurity, as well as economic and food crises occasioned by activities of herders in the region.

“At this critical point of our national life when the economy is being bedeviled by galloping inflation, youth unemployment and insecurity, food security is very crucial to mitigate the effects of these diverse evils on the citizens,” part of the statement said.

“Available records have shown that attaining food security status would remain a mirage in the south owing to the ravaging effect of outdated livestock grazing policy being unleashed on farmlands by some unscrupulous herders.






     

     

    “Most appalling were the seemingly unabated kidnapping, raping, and killing of our people by suspected herdsmen, who have become bandits heating up the system.

    “With this uniform resolve by our governors to initiate no-open grazing policy, the region will return to its peaceful and agriculturally self -sufficient status it had assumed even long before Nigeria’s amalgamation in 1914.”

    The 17 governors of the southern states held a meeting in Asaba, Delta State, on Tuesday, where they agreed to jointly ban open grazing in all the states in the region.

    Other key demands are that President Muhammadu Buhari should be fairer in political appointments, convoke a national dialogue, accept the establishment of state police.

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