PDP slams Gov. Ayade on views against Anti-Open-Grazing law
The Peoples Democratic Party in Cross River State has condemned the State Governor; Prof. Ben Ayade for holding views that depicts his reservations and opposition to the views of the Southern Governors’ forum on Anti-Open Grazing Law.
The Southern Governors had agreed that all states in the Southern part of Nigeria which includes Cross River should pass a law to ban open grazing. But Governor Ayade speaking recently and publicly for the first on the issue said “I have not done as the Southern Governors so decided because I had to find a solution.”
“We have to find a way to create the balance between the herders and the farmers.”
“We are coming with an open grazing management law. Not a prohibition because I think morally and ethically it is unacceptable to prohibit a trade that existed before I was born. I will rather find a way to modulate and moderate it so that it meets modern definition of animal farming or husbandry.”
“I cannot ask my herdsmen brothers either of the North or the Southern extraction to stop their trade and source of livelihood. Cross River State Law will come with concerns for both parties: herdsmen and farmers.”
In their reaction to the views of Gov. Ayade, the State PDP chapter in a statement signed by the State Publicity Secretary, Prince Mike Ojisi said “It’s regrettable that a government that ought to reflect the wishes and aspirations of the people has chosen to fight the people that it ought to protect.”
They argued that “the good people of Cross River State have spoken elaborately loud against open grazing typified by Fulani herdsmen. In Obudu, where the governor comes from and throughout the Northern Senatorial District of the State that shares border with Benue State- who are exposed to this menace- have in recent months taken laws into their hands by chasing away hordes of Fulani herdsmen from their various villages in a mass action by Youths.”
“This kind of mass action which can breed resistance and anarchy, but became necessary in the face of the government’s inability or refusal to come to the aid of its citizens, underscores the fact that Governor Ben Ayade has failed our people,” the PDP said.
They recalled that Governor Ayade at some time ago talked about venturing into the planting of a special grass he called King-grass that is a good feed for herds, then asked, “We also wish to advise the Governor, who is obviously head-over-heels in love with the Fulani herdsmen to export to the herdsmen the King-size Giant Grasses that he told Cross Riverians he was going to grow and sell to herdsmen, or are the grasses another digital phantom Project of the governor?”
The PDP statement called “on the governor to expeditiously sign into law the Anti-open grazing bill as Cross River State cannot afford the luxury of War and anarchy.”
Speaking from a point of view as an opposition party in Cross River State, the PDP said it condemns in strong terms views of Governor Ayade describing the views as such “reprehensible statement from the Governor, who ordinarily should always stand and protect the interest of his people first, before trying to sound Politically Correct- just to massage the ego of the hegemonic Fulani Herdsmen.”