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Osun Assembly passes anti-open grazing bill



The Osun State House of Assembly on Thursday passed the state’s Animal Grazing Regulation and Cattle Ranches Establishment Bill 2021.

The Speaker of the Assembly, Timothy Owoeye, who addressed journalists after the passage of the bill in Osogbo, said the bill would regulate animal grazing and establishments of cattle ranches in the state when it becomes law.

He said: “The bill will also prevent the destruction of farms by livestock, criminalise and prevent violent clashes between farmers and herdsmen among others.”

The speaker said the bill proposed a three-year imprisonment without an option of fine for the contravention of the law.

Owoeye added: “In addition, the bill stipulates the forfeiture of cattle or any livestock under the control of the offender to the state government.

“A minor is prohibited from grazing, rearing, or herding livestock except under the supervision of an adult.

“A minor who contravenes the provision of the law committed an offence, and the guardian or parent of the minor or owner of the livestock as the case may be shall be vicariously liable upon conviction to a fine of N300,000 only.

READ ALSO: Oyetola presents 2021 budget to Osun Assembly

“Permits shall only be issued to a Nigerian who is authorised to conduct business under the bill.

“Preference shall be given in issuance of ranching permits to those within or near districts that are landowners interested in livestock business.

“Any herdsman or pastoralist who attacks or threatens to track any farmer, person or commuter whether or not the injury is occasioned by the attack shall be guilty of an offence and liable upon conviction to a term of imprisonment of not less than one year without an option of fine.

“Conveyance of livestock on foot from one destination to another in the state is prohibited, except such movement is by rail, truck, or pick-up wagon and is within 7:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m.”

The Southern Governors’ Forum had in July gave member states a September 21 deadline for the promulgation of anti-open grazing law in their domains.

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