Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State has slammed the National Secretary of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria, MACBAN, Usman Ngelzarma.
Recall Usman had stated on Channels television that the open grazing prohibition and ranches establishment law of Benue State should be repealed.
According to Ortom, Usman Ngelzarma is a merchant of mischief who goes around peddling propaganda to make the state rescind its decision on the anti-grazing law.
Ortom boldly declared that they are not going back on their decision on open grazing any time soon.
Chief Press Secretary of the governor, Terver Akase issued a statement where he took a swipe at Usman.
The statement read: “Ngelzarma’s comments did not come to us as a surprise. He is indeed one of those whose willful ignorance and misinterpretation of the law have fueled bitter emotions and hatred among pastoralists to embark on a killing spree of farmers in Benue State and other parts of the country.
“The MACBAN National Secretary is not new to contradictory statements. It is on record that he and other officials of the group visited Benue State in 2017 and after a meeting with Governor Samuel Ortom, addressed the media where they pledged support for the state’s Open Grazing Prohibition and Ranches Establishment Law.
“On that occasion, Ngelzarma who spoke on behalf of the delegation admitted that with their deeper knowledge of the law during their visit to Benue, it was now obvious to MACBAN that the legislation was indeed not targeted at Fulani or any other group. Their only appeal was for an extension of the November 2017 deadline given for the commencement of implementation and enforcement of the law.
“That the Miyetti Allah mouthpiece now goes to national television to kick against the same law they once described as ‘a win-win for all’ only proves that he is a merchant of crisis and one of those bent on truncating the peacebuilding process in Benue and other states of the federation.