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Deadline for implementation of anti-open grazing law sacrosanct, says Ortom

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Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom


• OPSH debunks abetting Plateau killings
• Herdsmen raise alarm in Enugu over members’ safety

Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom yesterday said that his government would not be intimidated by anyone as the November 1, 2017 deadline for the implementation of the anti-open grazing law remained irreversible.

Ortom made the assertion during a meeting with a delegation of the Meyitti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) led by it President, Mohammad Kirowa and other stakeholders including traditional rulers, farmers and herdsmen at the Benue Peoples’ House in Makurdi.

He pointed out that the implications of failure to carry out the will of the people, which is the implementation of the law, was an indication that he was not fit to be governor, adding, however, that the law would have a human face.

He stated that the meeting was to inform stakeholders that government would go ahead to implement the law, which, he said, would help to maintain the peace and further sensitise the people on the November 1 deadline.

On the complaints by the leadership of the Fulani Meyitti Allah that the date was not convenient, Ortom explained that government gave enough time since May 2017, insisting that a shift in date would be unrealistic.

Responding, Kirowa dissociated the group and its members from statements credited to Myetti Allah Kautal Hore that they would continue with grazing activities as if the law never existed.

In a related development, the Operation Save Haven (OPSH), the multi-security task-force maintaining peace in Plateau State, parts of Southern Kaduna and Bauchi State has denied allegations that the command helped a particular group against another during the recent attacks on villages in Bassa Local Council of the state.

Commander of OPSH, Major General Anthony Atolagbe, told journalists that there was no reason to take sides, because its mandate was to protect the lives and property of all Nigerians and not to abet killings.

Meanwhile, the Enugu State chapter of MACBAN has pleaded with the state Commissioner of Police (CP) to protect them to enable them conduct their businesses in the state.

The herdsmen alleged that they and their cattle were under server threats by some host communities, alleging that three of their men were recently killed.

In a letter to the CP by the Southeast zonal chairman of the association, Gidado Siddiki and two others, they implored the Police boss to bring the killers of their men to book.


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Samuel Ortom

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