Odahiekwu Ogunde, Yenagoa
Bayelsa State government has said the implementation of anti-open grazing law is working and highly effective in the state.
The government said this in reaction to a statement credited to Governor Nasir el-Rufai that the South would not be able to implement the anti-open grazing law.
A ranking official of the state government said Governor Douye Diri did not want to take issues with his Kaduna State colleague, el-Rufai on his claim.
The official, who did not want his name mentioned because he was not authorised to comment on it, said el-Rufai was being economical with the truth and he did not have any proof to justify his unwarranted and unguarded statement.
He said: ” Kaduna State Governor Nasir el-Rufai is being economical with the truth. If el-Rufai tried to get information from the South, he would know that the anti grazing law is already being implemented in the states that have passed it.
“For instance, in Bayelsa State cows used to roam the streets of Yenagoa, destroying people’s farmlands but not any more. Since the law was passed in March this year, you don’t find the cows anymore encroaching into the farmlands of residents and you don’t find cows any more on the streets. There was even a time the herders that flouted the law were arrested with their cattles.
“In Bayelsa, the law is highly effective and it is working. He might have reasons for what he said but Bayelsa law is working and is being implemented. For him to know the true situation of things, el-Rufai should find out from owners of cattles. They no longer roam the streets.
“They now bring cattle in trucks to the cattle market unlike in the past when you find cattle and owners encroaching into people’s farms. The state has ensured that there is a peaceful coexistence between the cattle rearers and the people of the state. He did not have the fact, he was talking ignorantly.”