Sylvanus Viashima, Jalingo
The Taraba State Government has temporarily suspended the Anti-Open Grazing law in the state to allow for some amendments as farmers and herdsmen agree to shield swords.
The decision came after three days of interactive sessions between the National Economic Council Technical sub Committee on ending herders/farmers crisis, and key stakeholders in the state.
Leader of the NEC technical sub-committee and Governor Dave Umahi of Ebonyi State ,who disclosed this to journalists at the end of the three-day interactive sessions, in Jalingo, commended Governor Darius Ishaku for being considerate enough to allow for a review of the law after it has been duly passed by the state Assembly.
Governor Umahi said that the committee discovered that the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association had failed to appear during the public hearings organized by the state Assembly while considering the Bill and as such failed to make inputs into areas that they were aggrieved with.
Governor Umahi said all the stakeholders had unanimously agreed to support the law once some of the grey areas were addressed.
“It is our finding that the Miyetti Allah refused to appear at the public hearings organized by the state while this Bill was under consideration and so could not lay their complaints on areas that affected them negatively.
“After much deliberation, we have agreed that certain of the law should be revisited to reflect the complaints that arise from this interaction. That means despite the grace period given earlier, more grace period would still be granted during which these issues would be looked into and the pioneer ranches would be set up.
“I think it is important to acknowledge and appreciate the leadership model displayed by the governor who listened dispassionately to the issues raised by all the parties and has agreed to give room for the complaints made by some stakeholders to be factored into the law. I am sure this would mark the end of herders farmers crisis in the state”, Umahi said.
Governor Umahi noted with delight that both farmers and herders had agreed to shield their swords and warned that the state government has right to make laws that are binding on its subjects and attempts by any individual or groups to resist the law as is passed by the state assembly and signed by the governor amounts to intolerable lawlessness.
Daily Sun recall that the state anti open grazing bill was signed into law on 24th July, 2017 but only came into partial effect on the 24th January, 2018 after a six months grace period declared by the governor.