Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
The Benue State Government has warned some leaders of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) in the state who are in the habit of feeding herdsmen with lies about the state’s anti open grazing law.
Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Animal Husbandry, Alhaji Shehu Tambaya who handed down the warning on Thursday in a chat with newsmen said some of these MACBAN leaders go to the extent of collecting bribes from unsuspecting herdsmen and promising them Grazing space in Benue.
Tambaya noted that the state government will not hesitate to hand over any of such leaders who is caught in the habit to law enforcement agencies for prosecution.
He reiterated that the state’s anti open grazing law is not targeted at any tribe or persons stressing that the law is for the benefit of both farmers and herders.
He posited that the grazing routes which the herdsmen are talking about which existed in the 1950’s and 60’s are no longer there as the population of the country has increased greatly in the 21st century while the land remains the same.
The Governor’s aide explained further that any herdsman who is interested in doing livestock business in the state is free to approach the state government for directive as to how to acquire land for ranching.
He said the state government has adopted ranching of cattle in line with global best practices and would want everyone doing livestock business to abide by the laws of the land.
Tambaya also warned farmers against tampering with the livestock of herdsmen who are obeying the state’s anti open grazing law by ranching their livestock stressing that anyone who is caught would be made to face the wrath of the law.