Benue’s Open Grazing Prohibition Law: Herdsmen Pledge Compliance In Otukpo

The leaders of the Fulani Herdsmen in Otukpo have pledged to comply with the letters and spirit of the Benue’s Open Grazing Prohibition Law which came into force on the first day of November 2017.

They said this when they paid a courtesy call on Hon. George Alli, Executive Chairman Otukpo Local Government, to express their solidarity and readiness to comply with the law (anti-open grazing) as enacted by Benue State Government.

The leader of the delegation, Alhaji Aminu Abdullahi, who spoke on behalf of the team, opined that, they (Fulani) are indigene of Otukpo either by birth or “long stay”, and that most of them were giving birth to and bred up in Otukpo and they consider Otukpo to be their home. According to Aminu, “we see no reason why we should constitute threat and insecurity to Otukpo and Benue people whom we have been residing with for decades”. Aminu, then on behalf of the Fulani community in Otukpo pledged their support to the law and solicited for land to enable them to ranch their cattle.

Addressing the Fulani community in his office, George Alli appreciates his guests for the timely visit and took time to disabuse their minds on the insinuation that, “Fulani is the target” of the Open Grazing Prohibition Law. According to George Alli, the law is applicable to everyone in the State, who want to rear livestock, and that ranching is the Global best practice in Animal Husbandry, while the ranching system is the permanent solution to the incessant farmers and herdsmen clashes. Alli, then assured them of security while their request will be looked into.

George Alli further intimated his guests of a standing committee, that will take a census of all the Fulanis resident in Otukpo, and charged them (Fulani) to always volunteer information and report any strange Fulani. He also urged them to cooperate with the committee and liaise with the Och’Otukpo. Meanwhile, a truck has been donated to the vigilante group for onward implementation of the law.

Och’Otukpo, Chief John Eimonye also corroborated the words of the council boss and advised, the message should be communicated to other members of Fulani at home, while he assured them of safety and cooperation.

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