Ondo State Governor Rotimi Akeredolu has lashed out at his Kaduna State counterpart Nasir el-Rufai over his stance on the Anti-open Grazing Law in the majority of southern states. El-Rufai on Tuesday attacked southern governors for signing the anti-open grazing bill into law, saying the law was not implementable as he stressed that ranching would have been the best option.
But Akeredolu a statement by his Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Donald Ojogo, accused El-Rufai of “struggling hard to export banditry to the South under an expressed opinion laced with mischief”. While emphasizing that the law had come to stay in the state, the Chairman of the Southern Governors’ Forum said there was “no wisdom in condemning/banning open grazing, prohibiting inter border movement of cattle in the North, including Kaduna”. The Chairman of the South West Governors’ Forum said, “From all indications, Governor Nasir el-Rufai, if he was properly quoted and his views not misrepresented, is struggling hard to export banditry to the South under an expressed opinion that is laced with mischief. “In these days and times, anyone who makes statements such as that allegedly made by the governor belongs to a class of an unenviable ilk masquerading as leaders.
“There is no wisdom in condemning/banning open grazing, prohibiting inter-border movement of cattle in the North, including Kaduna, with an accompanying disapproval of a law that gives bite to same, in another part of the country. “Perhaps it is apt to state clearly that the likes of Governor El-Rufai are already in a hysteric ‘mode’ of escalating and indeed, externalising banditry, especially as the military onslaught against criminal elements and other terror variants suffices in the North. “For emphasis, any such comment like that of the Kaduna Governor, if indeed he made that statement, merely seeks to encourage anarchy under the guise ‘of resentment of a law by affected stakeholders’. “In order words, it is a cleverly crafted path towards replicating in the South, the most despicable situation in the North that Nigerians of goodwill daily pray to overcome. It’s a ploy beyond the ordinary.
“It must, however, be noted that the Anti-Grazing Law, especially in Ondo State, has come to stay. It shall be zealously guarded and conscionably deployed to protect all residents of Ondo State, notwithstanding their ethnic and religious biases. Those who have nothing evil to perpetrate have nothing to fear as regards the law.”