Southern state governors who prohibited open grazing in the Southern part of the country have lambasted Abubakar Malami, the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) over the latter’s recent reaction to their unanimous decisions.
The governors from the three geo-political zones in the South had last week placed a ban on open grazing in the regions. They cited threat to food security among others as their reason for taking the decisive decision.
While citizens, including state and federal lawmakers from the geo-political zones backed the governors, others from the Northern Nigeria, including Mr Malami, kicked against it.
The AGF who also doubles as the Justice Minister said prohibiting open grazing was like banning sales of auto apart parts. He said the decision of the governors is an infringement on the freedom of movement right of Nigerians.
Berating the submission of the minister, the chairman of Southern Governors Forum (SGF), Rotimi Akeredolu, said it was unfortunate that a senior government officials like him finds it difficult to distinct between a legitimate business that is not in any way injurious and a certain predilection for anarchy.
“Clinging to an anachronistic model of animal husbandry, which is evidently injurious to the harmonious relationship between the herders and the farmers as well as the local populace, is wicked and arrogant,” Mr Akeredolu said in a statement on Thursday.
“Comparing this anachronism, which has led to the loss of lives, farmlands and property, and engendered untold hardship on the host communities, with buying and selling of auto parts is not only strange. It, annoyingly, betrays a terrible mindset.
“Mr. Malami is advised to approach the court to challenge the legality of the Laws of the respective States banning open grazing and decision of the Southern Governor Forum taken in the interest of their people. We shall be most willing to meet him in Court.
“The decision to ban open grazing stays. It will be enforced with vigour,” the SGF official who doubles as Ondo State governor added.