Rivers State governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, has said the ban on open grazing in the state will be given legal backing to protect Rivers people from marauding herdsmen.
Wike, who disclosed this yesterday while speaking at the inauguration of the Isaiah Odoli and Omerelu Streets in New GRA, Port Harcourt, said the Anti-Open Grazing bill will be sent to the State House of Assembly.
The governor stated that in addition to protecting farmland in Rivers State, women and youths, the bill is in keeping with the resolution made by the Southern Governors Forum.
He said: “You can’t go to the farm anymore, those who rear cattle, they’ll not allow your crops to grow. Let me say clearly, now that the House of Assembly has come back, we have to submit the bill on Anti-Open Grazing as we agreed in the Southern Governors Forum.
“So, that everybody must understand it, it’s clear, without any hesitation, we must do it to protect our farms, to protect our women, to protect our youths, so that nobody will go and kill them.”
Wike asserted that Nigerians, who had considered the All Progressives Congress (APC) as better alternative to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in 2015, must be regretting the deplorable condition of the country under APC.
The governor said: “The exchange rate has now got to N510 to a Dollar. When they took over, it was N150 to a Dollar. They said they’ll give employment. Do we have employment today? Are your children employed?
He stated the APC led federal government has not done anything in Rivers state for the people, describing as untrue the claim by the federal government that it is jointly executing the Bonny-Bodo Roads.
Wike said: “The only thing they are arguing now is that they are doing Bonny-Bodo Road. No, with due respect, that’s no correct. That road was supposed to be done by NLNG and the federal government. NLNG brought their N60million, federal government did not bring any Kobo.
“Now they are trying to use the tax that NLNG is supposed to pay to do the road. The tax would have been shared from the federation account and part of the money would have come to Rivers State. So, federal government cannot say that they’re the one doing Bonny-Bodo road. All of us are jointly doing the road.”
Inaugurating the road project, former Senate President, Senator David Mark said Rivers people are very lucky to have a governor who fulfills promises made and provides infrastructure with a human touch.
Such posture, Senator Mark said, re-enact the fact that Governor Wike is the true leader of politics in the state behind who every person can easily align and follow without hesitation.