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FG lacks power to stop anti-open grazing law in states

FG lacks power to stop anti-open grazing law in states

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Kamarudeen Ogundele, Ado Ekiti

Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, has described call by the Federal Government for the suspension of the anti-open grazing law by States as an affront to federalism.

The governor said this on Wednesday in a response to the call by the Minister of Defense, Mansur Dan-Ali.

Fayose said it was amazing that the presidency still saw the states as appendages of the federal government.

According to him, it is the rights of the State Houses of Assembly of the federating units to make laws for the smooth running of their states.

He declared that there was no going back on the implementation of the anti-open grazing law in Ekiti State, advising the presidency and its cabal to stop looking the other way while herdsmen went about killing Nigerians.

Fayose said these in a statement by his Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka.

He said, “The President Muhammadu Buhari led federal government is acting as if there is more to its opposition to the ban on open grazing by some States than it is telling Nigerians.

“Those who are genuinely interested in peace and unity of Nigeria know that anti-grazing law is not responsible for killings across the country by herdsmen because herdsmen have killed more people even in States where the law is not in existence. 

“Rather, it is the federal government’s refusal to act decisively on pure security issues that has emboldened the killer herdsmen to even go about attacking military formations and police stations.

“It is also interesting that this same federal government told Nigerians last year that most of the herdsmen carrying out attacks across Nigeria are foreigners. Is the Minister of Defense telling states to suspend their laws in the interest of foreigners that are killing Nigerians?”

“In January, this same Minister of Defense blamed the passage of anti-open grazing law in some states as the cause of the recent killings by herdsmen in some of the states. Yesterday again after a security meeting with President Buhari, the Defense Minister was still singing the same song. Is there something to this old system of nomadic cattle rearing that they are not telling Nigerians?”

Fayose said the federal government should be concerned about how to take the herdsmen out of the bush and give them decent life by embracing cattle ranching. 

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