Nigeria: Ndume Kicks As Southern Lawmakers Back Govs' Ban On Open Grazing

Chairman, Senate Committee on Army, Ali Ndume, yesterday faulted the decision of southern governors to ban open grazing of cattle.

Ndume's view was contrary to that of federal lawmakers from the south who backed the decision of the governors to ban open grazing.

It would be recalled that the Southern Governors Forum had, at its meeting held in Asaba, Delta State, on Tuesday, prohibited open grazing in the region to checkmate herders-farmers clashes.

Addressing reporters in Abuja yesterday, Senator Ndume (APC, Borno South) said Nigeria's security problem was not about open grazing.

"The governors are deviating from the matter. The problem is not about open grazing. The problem is security. Most of the security problems confronting Nigeria are not in the bush.

"We have four different types of security challenges. We have the insurgency in the North East, IPOB through the Eastern Security Network is creating insecurity in the South East, there's banditry in the North West.

"It's only in the North Central that we have issues of farmers-herders clashes. There's less problem in the Southwest except for the clashes between the herdsmen and the farmers and the agitators for the Yoruba nation.

Ndume also the military must be provided with adequate weapons to prosecute the war against insurgency.

He also said salaries and allowances of military personnel ought to be paid in time.

Earlier yesterday, the Southern Senators Forum, through its Chairman, the Secretary-General and the Publicity Secretary of the forum, Senators Opeyemi Bamidele (Ekiti), Mathew Uroghide (Edo) and Chukwuka Utazi (Enugu) respectively, said the ban on open grazing would help in reining in those hiding under cattle grazing to unleash terror of kidnapping and killing on the residents of the region.

Similarly, members of the House of Representatives from the south also supported the ban on open grazing, the call for restructuring and other demands made by their governors.

They expressed their support in a statement by House Minority Leader Ndudi Elumelu, Honourable Peter Akpatason, Nkeiruka Onyejeocha, Toby Okechukwu and 18 others.

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