Nasarawa State Governor, Abdullahi Sule, has faulted the anti-open grazing policy adopted by some state governments in the country.
The governor, who spoke on Monday during an interview on Politics Today, believes the programme is not working.
“We don’t like the current anti-grazing policy, it is not working,” he said during the Channels Television political show. “We are not just going with the crowd about Anti-Grazing law. If you sign anti-grazing law and it is not working, is it worth it?
“One thing all the northern governors have decided, we said that the current method of open grazing is old-fashioned, outdated, and cannot be sustained.”
Governor Sule made the remarks a few hours after his Lagos State counterpart, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, signed the anti-open grazing bill into law.
The action of the Lagos governor was in line with the resolution of the Nigerian Southern Governors Forum that member-states should enact the law prohibiting open grazing to align with the uniform template and aspiration of the governors.
During the latest meeting held on Thursday last week in Enugu, the governors commended the rate at which the states in the South were enacting the law and encouraged others to do so expeditiously.
But Governor Sule, who is not a member of the forum, has a contrary view, although he agreed that the nomadic lifestyle of herders was not the way to go.
He stated that while it might be easy for the Nasarawa State House of Assembly to pass the anti-open grazing bill, the fate of the herdsmen should not be left hanging.
As an alternative to the anti-open grazing law, the governor revealed that the state government has decided to endorse the National Livestock Transformation Plan.
He explained that his administration planned to settle herders by setting up grazing reserves in seven locations in the state, an initiative he said was taken in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and the Netherlands Government.
“The best way to do that is if you have options for the people; it is very easy for Nasarawa to say in one week, we will go to the Assembly to go ahead and have anti-grazing law.
“So what happens to the Fulanis that are moving back and forth? If the Fulanis know why it is not working, the best way is to give them something that works,” said Governor Sule.