Benue News: Gov Ortom Speaks On Grazing Law After Meeting With Buhari
President Muhammadu Buhari and Governor Samuel Ortom

The Governor of Benue State, Samuel Ortom, on Monday revealed that the anti-open grazing law in the state is being implemented. Concise News understands.

Ortom, who disclosed that no fewer than 400 persons from various ethnic nationalities have so far been arrested for violating the grazing law.

Advertise With Us

Concise News learned that the Governor, who spoke with the State House correspondents after a private meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, said the law on open grazing is still effective and was not selective.

He said: “The place is relatively peaceful; the law is being implemented and we have arrested 400 people irrespective of their ethnic background, whether Fulani, Igbos, Yoruba, Tiv, Idoma.

“We have convicted 50 people for contravening various offences and we have seized more than 2,000 cattle.

“But we ensured, no one has molested any cattle, nor killed any cattle but once your cattle is seized for open grazing by the livestock guard, within seven years when your cattle are quarantined, if you don’t come to pay fines and redeem your cattle, we auction them.

“So far, for cattle that we have arrested, people have come to redeem and so we have not had any cause to auction any cattle; the law is still in force in Benue State and we are implementing it,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Governor also reacted to reports showing that his state was among 17 states that were bankrupt as their Internally Generated Revenues (IGR) in 2018 were far below 10 per cent of their receipts from the Federation Account Allocations (FAA) in that year.

He declared that to be able to pay the N30,000 minimum wage and meet other demands, loopholes would be blocked and other avoidable expenditures.

Ortom said that his administration will look inward; generate more funds; improve on IGR; block some leakages and cut down the cost of governance.

“For me, if I have my way they should even earn more than N30, 000 if the resources are there, they deserve it, we go to the same market and so we know the cost of living and other things are involved.

“There are about 17 states-all together; maybe at governors’ forum, there will be a way to get out of it,” he added.

However, Gov Ortom also identifies a notorious criminal who has been terrorizing the State, known as Gana. He revealed that Gana was trained by the Boko Haram terrorist group.