Governor Hope Uzodimma has come under sharp criticisms from the opposition, All Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA, in the state for saying there is no law in Imo State banning open grazing.
State Chairman, APGA, John Iwuala, said Uzodimma’s claims are contrary to Imo State law No 9 of 2006 which clearly prohibited rearing of cattle (open grazing) in the State.
Iwuala in a statement made available to newsmen in Owerri stated that the Governor seems “not to be conversant with the happenings in the state as regards anti grazing law”
According to copies of the law which he made available, Section 3 and 4 states that “Rearing of Cattle on the streets, main roads, residential and commercial places in Owerri Capital Territory and cultivated areas identified as Restricted Areas in Imo State is hereby prohibited”
“A cattle rearer shall not take his cattle into cultivated farms within Imo State”
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The Imo State APGA boss also took a swipe at members of Imo State House of Assembly, whom he described as ‘legislative illiterates”.
“They are either afraid to tell the Governor the truth or that they cannot embark on a comprehensive research of extant laws already made by their predecessors.
He advised Governor Uzodimma not to hide under the guise of a herders/farmers relationship to deceive the people of Imo State “with his sugar coated tongue”
Recall that Governor Hope Uzodimma, had rejected the proposed deadline agreed upon by Southern governors to ban open grazing in the region
Speaking to Channels tv, he pointed out that there is peace already between farmers and herders in Imo State, so his government won’t be promulgating another law banning open grazing.
He highlighted that the issue has been taken care of by the Memorandum of Understanding signed between the two parties in Imo and they’ve been carrying on their businesses without any issue.
In his words, “I don’t have any law in Imo State for Anti-Grazing. What we have done is that we are regulating grazing activities in the State under a partnership between our farmers and our herders.
“They signed a Memorandum of Understanding in my office where they agreed to work together and both parties have been going about their businesses without causing any grievances or anger to each other”.