Convert Sambisa Forest to grazing land for herdsmen, Benue youths tell FG

By John Charles, Makurdi 

The National Coordinator of Strict Movement Against Ravages in Tivland, Gbakighir Sevendagas, has called on the Federal Government to prepare Sambisa Forest for herdsmen and their cows if it insists on maintaining grazing reserves or open grazing.

Sevendagas condemned the Fulani herdsmen’s insistence on open grazing, while urging the Benue State Government to curb encroachment of major roads and streets for religious activities.

Earlier, the Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, had said the government would ensure the full implementation of the new anti-grazing law expected to come into force on Wednesday, November, 1, 2017.

Ortom said the law would be enforced, “even if it amounts to going to the International Court in The Hague.

Ortom, who was represented by his deputy, Benson Abounu, while receiving in audience youths under the auspices of Strict Movement Against Ravages in Tivland, SMART Land, said the promulgation of the law was solely for the benefit of the citizens who has lobbied for it.

He said the aim of the law was to protect lives and property of residents of Benue State, “irrespective of their religion and nationality;” adding, “That is why we have Igbo, Yoruba and other communities in the group here today.”

“The law is to protect all classes of people of Benue State because the law makes provision against cattle rustling and destruction of crop farming.

“As from Wednesday, the law will take effect and there is no going back on it, even if it amounts to going to International Court in Hague.

Scores of youths across Benue State had marched round major streets of Makurdi to rally support for the anti-open gazing law, vowing to protect and preserve their land.

PUNCH

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