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Akeredolu Replies Malami, Says Ban on Open Grazing Has Come to Stay

By Eric Elezuo

The Ondo State governor and Chairman, Southwest Governors Forum, Olakunri Rotimi Akeredolu, has lambasted the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar for comparing open grazing and sale of spare parts, saying that the ban of open grazing will not be revoked as it has come to stay.

The governor was speaking via a statement against the backdrop of comments credited to the AGF which ridiculed the meeting, last week of southern governor and comparing open grazing in the south to sale of spare parts in the north.

“Comparing this anachronism, which has led to loss of lives, farmlands and property, and engendered untold hardship on the host communities, with buying and selling of auto parts is not only strange. It, annoyingly, betrays a terrible mindset,” Akeredolu said.

Declaring Malami’s utterances as unfortunate, Akeredolu said the Chief law officer is “unable to distill issues as expected of a Senior Advocate.”

The governor further advised the AGF is seek redress in court if he is so offended with the southern governors decision to ban open grazing.

“Mr Malami is advised to approach the court to challenge the legality of the Laws of the respective States baning open grazing and decision of the Southern Governor Forum taken in the interest of their people. We shall be most willing to meet him in Court,” he said.

The full statement:

OUR DECISION IS IRREVERSIBLE AND WILL BE ENFORCED

I have just read the press statement credited to the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr Shehu Malami SAN on the resolution of the Southern Governors Forum to ban open grazing in their respective States. The AGF is quoted to have said that this reasoned decision, among others, is akin to banning all spare parts dealers in the Northern parts of the country and is unconstitutional.

It is most unfortunate that the AGF is unable to distill issues as expected of a Senior Advocate. Nothing can be more disconcerting. This outburst should, ordinarily, not elicit response from reasonable people who know the distinction between a legitimate business that is not in anyway injurious and a certain predilection for anarchy. Clinging to an anachronistic model of animal husbandry, which is evidently injurious to harmonious relationship between the herders and the farmers as well as the local populace, is wicked and arrogant.

Comparing this anachronism, which has led to loss of lives, farmlands and property, and engendered untold hardship on the host communities, with buying and selling of auto parts is not only strange. It, annoyingly, betrays a terrible mindset.

Mr Malami is advised to approach the court to challenge the legality of the Laws of the respective States baning open grazing and decision of the Southern Governor Forum taken in the interest of their people. We shall be most willing to meet him in Court.

The decision to ban open grazing stays. It will be enforced with vigour.

SIGNED

ARAKUNRIN OLUWAROTIMI O AKEREDOLU, SAN
GOVERNOR, ONDO STATE

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