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Jonathan, southern lawmakers back govs’ anti-open grazing resolution

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[FILES] Goodluck Jonathan. Photo: TWITTER/GEJONATHAN

Former President Goodluck Jonathan, yesterday, backed the southern governors for banning open grazing in their states, saying the Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF), remains the best platform to discuss critical issues affecting Nigeria.

He stated this in Benin City, Edo State at the thanksgiving service to mark the 50th birthday of General Overseer of Rock of Ages Christian Assembly International (RACAI), Pastor Charles Osazuwa.

He stressed that their coming together to discuss issues affecting the country and proffer solutions to them would go a long way in helping President Muhammadu Buhari to address some of the issues affecting the country.

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“Governors should continue to meet, I don’t really love a situation where the Northern governors will meet then the Southern governors will cry foul.

“When the southern governors meet and the Northern governors cry foul, that will not help the country. The governors should meet, they are the people running the country,” he added.

Houses of Assembly in the southern states of the country, at the weekend, backed their governors’ ban on open grazing and urged them to send bills to the legislatures with a view to addressing the issues raised.

While commending the governors for banning open cattle grazing, speakers of the Houses of Assembly canvassed national dialogue, restructuring of the country and respect for Federal Character principle.

In a resolution signed by Deputy National Chairman, Conference of Speakers of State Legislatures of Nigeria, Sheriff Oborevwori, Vice Chairman South-South, Aniekan Bassey, Vice Chairman, South East, Francis Nwifuru and Vice Chairman South West, Olakunle Taiwo Oluomo, they insisted that the resolutions of the southern governors were pathways to resolving the many challenges facing the country.

“We the speakers of state legislatures in the South commend the governors for their patriotism and firm belief in the unity of Nigeria. We salute them for their initiative and restate our support for their position.

“We wish to state that the issues canvassed in the communiqué are neither new nor strange, but rather they require swift response from the Federal Government.”

“The challenges facing Nigeria presently require bold and audacious measures to stop the country from sliding into total chaos and abyss.

“We maintain that the governors’ position as contained in the communiqué issued on May 11, 2021 in Asaba, Delta State, are sacrosanct and will guarantee justice, fairness and equity in the country,” they said.

Adopting the governors’ position, they restated the call for the ban on open grazing of cattle in the South, adding: “We support the call for the restructuring of the country to enthrone true federalism and therefore, the convocation of a national dialogue is inevitable.

“This will afford stakeholders of the country to discuss their prejudices and together work out a sustainable relationship, as one indivisible country. We pledge to deploy our legislative powers to strengthen the positions canvassed by the governors of the southern states.”

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