Gani Adams, Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland, has told the Federal Government that the southern region will not accept the re-establishment of grazing routes for herders to graze their cattle in the country.
Adams said this in an interview on Saturday in reaction to the decision by President Muhammadu Buhari concerning grazing routes.
President Buhari had in an interview recently disclosed that he has directed Abubakar Malami, the Attorney-General of the Federation, to review grazing laws of the 1960s and work with relevant agencies to reclaiming grazing routes that have been encroached.
According to the Federal Government, the move is meant to address the clashes between herdsmen and farmers.
But reacting, Adams said the move is an attempt by the Federal Government to create anarchy and political instability, particularly in the southern part of the country.
The Aare Ona Kakanfo stated that the reclaiming and establishment of grazing routes cannot work in southern Nigeria as it is unpopular, adding that the resuscitation of an old law not reflected in the 1999 constitution (as amended) is suspect.
“Grazing routes cannot work because the entire Southern Nigeria has spoken and we are against open grazing; the governors in the region have banned it already and lawmakers have started enacting laws in their state assemblies to ban it,” Adams told the Punch.
“The Federal Government should recognise that we have three tiers of government and should not create an impression that every law is in the hands of the Federal Government. The issue of open grazing should be a state law and a local government law because it is about the security of the state.
“Open grazing has been constituting security threats and has caused a lot of deaths of citizens and this is giving Nigeria a very bad image before the international community. The Federal Government should go against anything which threatens lives and property of Nigerians. If it encourages anything that will create insecurity, then, those in government have hidden agenda towards Southerners.”
“The Federal Government is driving the country to the point of anarchy and political instability by confronting the southern governors on the ban of open grazing. Open grazing is an insecurity of the highest order in the country.
“I don’t know why the President is bringing up an old law that was not even reflected in the 1999 Constitution. It is impossible for him to bring it up now. We will take a necessary position if that happens