The Inspector General of Police (IGP), Ibrahim Idris, yesterday warned Nigeria State Governors to desist from implementing anti-open grazing laws in their respective states until they have built ranches for livestock in their states.
According to an email statement from the Force Headquarters, the IGP is reportedly to have made the declarations at a security council meeting with northern leaders on Wednesday in Kaduna State saying;
“To reduce the incidence of clashes between farmers and herders in Nigeria, state governments should endeavour to establish grazing ranches in their various states before enacting laws to prohibit open rearing and grazing,”.
The police chief has been an ardent critic of any legislation that targets herdsmen’s activities across the country, warning that the best approach towards a peaceful resolution of the farmers-herders crisis is to work out the modalities for livestock ranching first.
The IGP also said, “Establishment of ranches across the states would make the anti-open grazing statutes “acceptable by all the parties concerned and other critical stakeholders in that all-important sector”.
Ibrahim Idris said, “It will do us good if we avoid the hasty formulation and implementation of such laws across the country in the interest of peace and unity”.
So far, governors in Benue, Ekiti and Taraba States, have gone ahead to sign the anti-open grazing laws with several other states across the southern part of Nigeria currently weighing laws against open-grazing.
Ostensibly, it may seem Mr. Idris warnings to governors not to emulate their counterparts in the three states listed above is to serve as deterrent in order not to worsen the security situation across the country.
However, Mr. Idris and the Nigerian Police’s position on the recent violent killings across Nigeria by Fulani herdsmen has been criticized heavily by the Nigerian people who look up to their government for protection but are currently being killed daily across the country.