The Governor of Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu, on Tuesday, assented to the anti-open grazing bill following its passage by the state house of assembly.
Akeredolu stated that it is consistent with the resolution agreed upon by southern governors that all states in the region should pass a law that forbids open grazing before September 1.
Akeredolu said the law is a welcome development that would prevent “needless instances of skirmishes” on the people of the state.
“The move is in line with the resolution of the Southern Governors’ Forum at its last meeting in Lagos where September 1st was set as the deadline for governors in southern Nigeria to sign the Anti-Open Grazing Bill into law,” the governor said in a statement.
“This is worthwhile and a very laudable development aimed at stemming needless instances of skirmishes, conflicts as well as infractions on the enviably peaceful disposition of the good people of Ondo State.
“It is very pertinent to aver and indeed, reiterate that the law shall rather, engender a more cordial, mutually benefiting relationship amongst residents of the State irrespective of ethnicity, religion or creed. For emphasis, no particular group of persons is the target.
“While it is the hope of the government that all residents would take an ample advantage of this Law to enhance our socio-economic well being in Ondo State, compliance of the same shall be given the utmost attention.
“Government shall pursue with vigour, through lawful means, to ensure strict compliance. In this regard, details of the new Law shall be made available to the public for proper information, more depth of understanding on contents as well as other relevant areas.”
Southern governors in May, met in Asaba, Delta state capital, agreed to ban open grazing and the movement of cattle by foot.
The decision of the governors stirred mixed reactions as some Nigerians commended them for the initiative, while some disagreed, including Abubakar Malami, the attorney-general of the federation (AGF).