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Gov. Ortom signs anti-open grazing bill into law

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Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue has signed into law the state amendment bill against open grazing on Thursday.

Speaking at the ceremony in Makurdi, Governor Ortom said the amendment was made necessary because the law had a loophole.

He said the amount charged as a fine was too low compared to the ordeals cattle guards and other law enforcement agencies face when arresting animals that break the law.

The governor said that the fine was increased from N2,000 to N50,000 per animal.

“In addition, after paying the stipulated fine of N50,000, if the owner of the animals did not move them, he will pay N20,000 per animal for each day the animal may be in the care of the livestock guards.

“If the owner does not pay the stipulated fine after seven days, the animal will be auctioned according to the amended law.

“Other than the change in the fine, everything else in the law remained unchanged,” Ortom said.

He praised state lawmakers for thoroughly reviewing the law and quickly passing it.

Earlier, Titus Uba, Speaker of the State Assembly Assembly, said the chamber had worked on the law to make it more effective.

Uba said the law has provided solid solutions to the problem of clashes between herders and farmers.

 

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