By Lukman Olabiyi
Both Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) and the Agbekoya Farmers Society have backed Southern Governors on the ban on open grazing of cattle in the southern part of the Country.
The two groups described the idea as welcome development that would go a long way in checking insecurity across the region but also sought the governors permission on the use of juju for it enforcement and deal with criminal/ defiant herdsmen ruthlessly.
Speaking separately with Daily Sun, both OPC Publicity Secretary, Yinka Oguntimehin and the National Secretary of Agbekoya, Prince Adegbenro Ogunlana expressed the readiness of their groups to complement government effort on security.
On ban of open grazing by the governors, the groups pledged to support the government to make sure the law is effective by using all what they have (Juju) to enforce it
Stated that it would more effective than what the government is depending on to enforce it.
Oguntimehin in his word:” It’s is a very welcome development, and we believe in it go a long way in checking issues of insecurity. Whenever it comes to issue of security, OPC is always in forefront, our intervention on issues of security is an open secret. People should not misinterpret the good intention of the governors; they are not against anybody but the criminal elements who disturbing the peace of Nigerians. For peace to reign will collaborate the government as we have been doing before and again, if we get the government backing we will use all have including juju to tackle insecurity”.
Welcoming the development as well, Ogunlana said: ” it’s a good step taking in the right direction by the governors if, they are sincere with their decision and not just playing politics as usual.
Nobody is against anybody, all we care for is security of life and property, the South is not against the North. Apart from ban on open grazing and other resolutions of governors, the farmers should also be compensate for their loss in the past, government should support us, we need support. If government can back us, our traditional ways of protecting life and security are still with us, and we are ready to unleash it if permitted by the government “.
Meanwhile, many lawyers have faulted the position of some Northern stakeholders that the declaration of ban of open grazing by the southern governors was not in line with 1999 Constitution.
The National President of Kulen Allah Cattle Rearers Association of Nigeria (KACRAN), Khalil Mohammed Bello, while reacting to the development had said that the ban on open grazing negates the 1999 constitution.
But according a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Kunle Adegoke said
It was unfortunate that the makers of such statement did not consult knowledgeable people before exhibiting such ignorance.
In his words :”The ban on open grazing is just a regulation of a trading activity in line with what the Constitution permits. No trade or business activity is allowed under the Constitution to be carried in a manner destructive of the means of sustenance of others. Where the freedom of the herdsmen ends is where the rights of others begin.
“It is disappointing and disheartening that in the 21st Century, some supposedly educated people still believe that mundane and atarvistic manner of rearing animals by open grazing should be elevated beyond human existence. At the age when other nations are striving to attain the best scientific achievement possible, some people are craving for land grabbing in the name of right to graze. It is a shame honestly.
“They should listen to voices of reason from the North like Governor Ganduje of Kano and former Emir Sanusi Lamido Sanusi. Reasonable people from the North do not indulge in such insensitive banalities. The Governors should just stick to their principled position on this issue, implement the law on anti-open grazing like we have in Oyo State and other places. We must return this country to its glorious days of peace and progress”.