Ortom signs anti-open grazing amendment bill into law



Gov. Samuel Ortom of Benue on Thursday signed the state anti-open grazing amendment bill into law.

Speaking at the ceremony in Makurdi, Ortom said that the amendment became necessary because the law had a lacuna.

He said that the amount charged as fine was too meager compared to the sufferings encountered by the livestock guards and other security agencies while arresting animals that violated the law.

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

“Also, after paying the stipulated fine of N50,000, if the owner of the animals failed to move them, he will pay N20,000 per animal for each day that the animal might be under the care of the livestock guards.

“If the owner failed to pay the stipulated fine after seven days, the animal will be auctioned in line with amended law.

“Apart from the change in the fine, every other thing in the law remained unchanged,’’ Ortom said.

He commended the state lawmakers for painstakingly going through the law and passing it speedily.

Earlier, Mr Titus Uba, the Speaker of the state Assembly House of Assembly, said that the house had worked on the law to make it more effective.

Uba said that the law has provided robust solutions to the problem of herders/farmers clashes.(NAN)