Ekiti State Governor Ayo Fayose yesterday signed a bill to regulate grazing, into law, with a warning that any herdsman caught with arms will face charges of terrorism.
The governor said the law would curtail activities of suspected herdsmen, who move about with firearms, unleashing terror on citizens.
According to the new law, any offender arrested and convicted is liable to six months’ imprisonment without any option of fine.
Grazing activities in designated places would take place between 7 am and 6 pm daily in Ekiti State.
The governor vowed that his administration will enforce the law, noting that the law was not targeted at any particular group but to ensure that the state does not descend into anarchy and senseless bloodletting.
Fayose signed the bill into law, with traditional rulers, community leaders and interest groups present.
He promised to convoke such a meeting once in three months to review the security situation and other issues affecting the state.
The governor earlier meet with the monarchs and community leaders at the Osuntokun Lodge of the Government House before giving his assent to the law in the open.
He said the bill became expedient to prevent a recurrence of an attack by suspected herdsmen on Oke Ako in Ikole Local Government, where two people were killed and scores injured on May 20.
The governor noted that by working with rulers, he would get a feedback on those plundering state resources, such as trees, farmlands and others.
Fayose said: “My government took the bill to the House after what happened in Oke Ako some months ago. The House has passed the bill and I have to assent it. It becomes a law from today that if you do anything to the contrary you will be punished by the law.”
Any herdsman caught with firearms or any weapon while grazing in Ekiti now will be charged with terrorism. I solicit your support for this government to succeed.”
The provisions of the law was read to the audience by the House of Assembly Speaker, Kola Oluwawole, who said the government will collaborate with local councils to apportion lands for grazing in designated areas.