The government of Abia State has restated its commitment to ensuring the sustained ban on open grazing of cattle in the state.
State Governor, Okezie Ikpeazu disclosed this during a virtual meeting with the press of Abia extraction under the aegis of Abia Media Forum.
The governor revealed that a bill is already in place to enforce the ban and also to checkmate the dealings of unscrupulous elements masquerading as nomads.
The ban on open grazing came as one of the 12 resolutions reached by Southern governors to put a stop to the activity of open grazing of cattle in their states.
The governors had made it known that open grazing often results in conflict between the host communities and migrant herders, leading to several deaths and murder, hence the need to restrict the activity in the states.
Some of the herders were also accused of committing other criminal acts like armed robbery, kidnapping and rape.
Ikpeazu said, “We are now at the point of making sure that we enforce and implement it, and even in doing that I must also share what I see as a challenge to the enforcement of that law.
“The law is in place and we are taking steps to enforce it.
“It has become imperative that we enforce that law strictly because we just noticed that we have big-time trouble in our hands.
“We have those that we refer to as criminal herdsmen; they are different from the ordinary herdsmen that we have been living with all these years.
“We now have in our mist bandits that have infiltrated from the rest of West Africa and other parts of Africa and their assignment is to come here rape, kill and kidnap people for money.
“It is now very imperative that we enforce that law,” he added.
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