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Ondo orders herdsmen to vacate forest reserves, bans night grazing

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For better security, chairman of South West Governors’ Forum, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, has directed herdsmen to vacate all forest reserves within the region. He also banned night grazing and movement of cattle within cities and highways.

The Ondo State chief executive, who gave the order yesterday, during a meeting with the leadership of the Hausa/Fulani and Ebira communities in Akure, said the seven-day quit notice took immediate effect.

His words: “In its usual magnanimity, our administration will give a grace period of seven days for those who wish to carry on with their cattle-rearing business to register with appropriate authorities.

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“Our resolution to guarantee the safety of life and property within the state shall remain utmost as security agencies have been directed to enforce the ban.”

He warned that his administration would not fold its arms and allow a few individuals turn the state into a haven for criminals.

The governor noted that security reports and debriefings from captives pointed to some bad elements masquerading as nomads.

During the parley, which was also attended by the Commissioner of Police, Bolaji Salami and state commandant of the Amotekun Corps, Tunji Adeleye, Akeredolu decried activities of the hoodlums, adding that they had turned the forest reserves in Ondo and the entire South West region into hideouts for keeping victims of kidnapping, negotiating ransoms and carrying out other evil deeds.

He stated: “As the chief law and security officer of the state, it is my constitutional obligation to do everything lawful to protect life and property. This meeting, therefore, is convened to address the issues of insecurity with the ultimate aim of attaining the goal of a safer environment.”

“Recent security trends attest that these times require all hands on deck, as the difficulties we face are dire. The challenges are quite enormous, but we are determined to confront them head-on.

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“We decided that all criminal elements, who hide under various guises to aid destruction of farmlands and perpetrate other violent crimes such as kidnapping, drug peddling and other nefarious activities, must be stamped out of our dear state.”

The governor added: “I wish to reassure the residents that the State Security Council, under my leadership, shall not relent in tackling these challenges as pragmatically possible. We shall remove all threats in no distant future.

“We have cases of several attacks on our people by these mindless elements. You will recall the gruesome murder of one of the members of the Ondo State Traditional Council, who was caught in the web of the devious plans of these workers of evil on his way back to his domain.”

“While we were still grieving, other kidnap attempts were made on the lives of road users across the state, especially along our boundaries and hinterland.”

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