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The Governor of Edo State, Godwin Obaseki has blamed the heightened tension in the state over the idea of grazing lands on those he described as the same political opponents he discredited and defeated in the last gubernatorial poll in the state.
The governor who had been reported to have earlier promised to establish grazing lands for herders, but in a swift twist, while speaking to State House correspondents after meeting with the Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, at the presidential villa, Abuja, weekend, he said his government was only encouraging private citizens to do business with herders for profit. He accused the political opponents of deliberately misrepresenting and misquoting the position of government for selfish reasons which are merely political
According to him, ‘If you will just go through some blogs and some of the narratives and messages sent around online and on social media, you can see a correlation. For instance, the people who are pushing the message that I have given grazing land in Edo, if you see them, they are the same blogs, the same people who were sponsoring opposition messages throughout the election. So, clearly, if you were in my position, what will be your conclusion? “Apart from that, the people who have been pushing the narrative are just trying to create a scare, trying to create trouble. These are people who we defeated during the last election.
‘So, clearly, we are not saying we don’t have challenges, we have security challenges, but leadership or people who have aspired to leadership, should not be irresponsible. You don’t inflame an already tense situation. That’s what we are saying.’
Governor Obaseki further affirmed that he did not renege on his promise to provide grazing lands, saying: ‘I said a state government is not in the business of ranching or of providing grazing lands. However, there are communities that have lands, which have, as at today, accommodated herders under some arrangements’.
AFRICA DAILY NEWS, NEW YORK