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Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki on Monday has opened up on why he has not signed the anti-open grazing bill into law like some of his colleagues in other States.
Speaking at a stakeholders’ Town-Hall meeting in Benin on the proposed Anti-open Grazing Law, Obaseki explained that it will not make sense to pass the law without devising a means of implementing it.
According to the Governor, the delay in signing the anti-open grazing bill in the state was due to the need to craft an implementable law that will put an end to the growing security and economic challenges in the state.
According to him, ‘We are one of the few states that have not signed the bill into law, and the reason is simple to sign law is very simple, it doesn’t make sense to put out a law you cannot enforce.
‘The best way of enforcing a law is to bring everybody together to be part of that law. We have a crisis in our country, it is deeply rooted, there are different causes why these are happening, let us go to the root of the causes and resolve it from there.
‘People have said that we have lived a hundred years together in harmony before now, why are we now having this problem today.
‘If we don’t go to the reason why then we will be scratching the surface, let us start by understanding why we are having this challenge. To sign law is very easy, it doesn’t make sense to put out a law that you cannot enforce.
‘The anti-grazing law in my view is to deal with some perception, I just want to tell you that this is not an issue between Christians and Muslims, it is not an issue between North and South, it is not an issue between Edo people and Fulani people.
‘As long as we have decided that we will eat meats and drink milk, we will now have to sit down and rearrange the business on how we will get the people who are producing the meat on how they must organize themselves.
‘Let us not play politics with this issue, let us deal with this issue honestly and openly, there are security implications because some people have now joined and using these herders to perpetuate insecurity.
‘I worry that if we don’t celebrate them, to understand that the business in cattle herding is separate so that we can know those people who are using cattle rearing to perpetrate crime and insecurity in our state we will be missing the point.
‘There are people who are doing their legitimate businesses of cattle herding and producing meat and their criminals who want to destabilize our country and our state,’ Obaseki said.
In his contribution, the Representative of the Christian Association of Nigeria in Edo, Rev. Oriakhi Davies, maintained that cattle rearing is a private business, and anybody interested in the business should go and acquire land for such businesses.
AFRICA DAILY NEWS, NEW YORK