Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue state has said the anti grazing law in the state has led to the arrest of over 400 herders, while some other 40 have been convicted since the law was implemented.
Ortom, on Tuesday, disclosed this during the orientation workshop organised by the Bureau of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs in the state for the council of chiefs and traditional rulers.
The governor said the government of the state had resisted intimidation in implementing the law.
The governor who is seeking a re-election said any cow seen roaming on any streets in the state would be impounded while adding that initial defaulters this law had been made to pay huge amount to retrieve their cows.
He warmed traditional rulers in the state against giving room for grazing in their domain.
“There is no amount of intimidation that will stop the anti-open grazing law, it is already in force, there is no going back.
“Any chief who allows herdsmen to graze openly in their domain is causing problems for himself because if our forefathers had caved in into the antics of these people, they would have taken over our land.
“We have arrested over 400 herdsmen, convicted over 40 herdsmen; if you are in doubt, go to the prison, you will see them there.”
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He added, “Any cattle we see roaming the street would be impounded. Recently, we impounded some cows, the owners came and paid over N300,000.00, another paid over N400,000.00; also one of them paid N600,000.00.
“I have challenged the Presidency to show me any better alternative to ranching but till now no one has come out with a better option to ranching. “
The governor maintained that the state would resist any form of external influence during elections in the state while adding that “there is no federal might that is greater than state might.”
“They have been talking of federal might, don’t be deceived, there is no federal might that is greater than state might; it is you people in the state that can determine what happens in the state, when the time (elections) comes. I will go round the state and supervise the elections.”
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