By Mukwuzi Joseph
Ban on open grazing takes effect in Delta State, as Governor Ifeanyi Okowa assented to the Anti-Open Grazing Bill on Thursday.
Tagged ‘Delta State Livestock, Breeding, Rearing and Marketing Regulation Bill 2021,’ the bill was signed into law by the governor 10 days after it scaled the third reading and was passed by the State House of Assembly during plenary presided over by the Speaker, Rt. Hon. Sherrif Oborevwori on Tuesday, September 21, 2021.
The law prohibits the carrying of firearms, either licenced or otherwise, by residence or individuals in the state; just as it seeks to address the arbitrary rearing and movements of livestock in the state.
Governor Okowa also signed the Delta State Urban and Regional Planning Bill 2020 into law.
The Bills had earlier been presented to the governor for assent by the Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Sheriff Oborevwori, who was accompanied by his Deputy, Christopher Ochor; and other principal officers of the state legislature.
Speaking after signing the two bills into law, Okowa called on the Federal Government to assist interested farmers to establish ranches across the country.
He remarked that the two laws were very important to Delta State, stressing that the State Livestock Breeding, Rearing and Marketing Regulations Law had taken a new life of its own in the country.
He maintained that the laws were not enacted to witch-hunt anybody but to encourage people to live with one another and respect others’ view, noting that with the passage, the Delta State House of Assembly had done the state proud.
Okowa recalled that the Southern Governors met and took certain decisions which they believed was in the best interest of the nation.
“Today is quite a remarkable day in the history of this state because we signed two important bills into law this morning.
“We believe that it is in the best interest of security, we believe that it is in the best interest of ensuring food security and that it will help us to ensure that we are able to cause people from across this nation who will find themselves outside their own states inhabiting in Delta State to live with Deltans in a peaceful and respectable manner with each other having respect for each other.
“We believe as the Southern Governors had stated that we must start to look into other ways of ensuring that we are able to breed and that we are able to rare our cattle and other livestock in such a manner that is acceptable in modern times.
“We believe that this is something workable, many times it is difficult for people to embrace change, but I believe that the world all over is changing by the day and if you find that change is going to bring peace, if you find that change is going to bring development and even economic enhancement, it should truly be embraced.
“I think that it is time for our nation to depart from the old ways and to look into the future, ensuring that we do things in the best way for development.
“We must encourage best actions to be taken towards ensuring that there is peaceful coexistence within the various ethnic nationalities in Nigeria and the various states and also ensuring that we are able to do our businesses in such a manner that is respectable and I think that is what this law stands for,” the governor declared.