The Miyetti Allah cattle breeders association on Friday rose from an emergency meeting in Kaduna with a charge on President Muhammadu to call Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom to order over the anti-open grazing law in that state.
The leadership of the cattle herders reiterated that, they would do everything legally possible to resist such law that is against their culture, movement and economic interests.
Their position was contained in a communiqué jointly signed by National President, Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore Fulani Socio-cultural Association, Alhaji Abdullahi Bello Bodejor, his Secretary, Engr Saleh Alhassan and Chairman Communiqué Drafting Committee, Garus Gololo, TheNation writes.
The communiqué read in part, “that we condemned the call by some desperate and jobless groups under the leadership of one Ariyo Atoye a jobless youth parading the streets of Abuja looking for crumbs from corrupt Politicians agitating for the profiling and stigmatisation of Fulani Pastoralist in Nigeria.
“We urged the Attorney General to ignore their letter as they are hired agents by a sinking Governor who is notorious for funding and arming militia groups causing havoc to the Fulani Pastoralist in the Benue Valley.
“We totally reject the repressive and oppressive ‘Anti-open Grazing Law’ as it is fundamentally going against our culture, economic interest and constitutional rights and will deploy all the necessary legal means as enshrined in our constitution to challenge it.
“Consequently, we affirmed our support and solidarity for the legal action taken by the Miyetti Allah Kautal HoreFulani Socio- cultural Association to challenge the negative Benue anti- grazing law at the Federal High Court Abuja.
“That Pastoralists, like all citizens of Nigeria, have the right to move freely and to reside in any part of the country. They also have a right to own property in any part of the country and enjoy the right of freedom from discrimination like any other citizen of the country.
“We call on the National Assembly to leave up to their responsibility because the inter-state movement of pastoralists is analogous to inter-state commerce, which is an exclusive preserve of the legislative powers of the National Assembly under item 62 of the Exclusive Legislative List. To this effect, any action taken by a state Assembly is in conflict with above section of the 1999 constitution as amended.
“We are calling on the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Inspector General of Police, The Senate President, The Speaker of The House of Representatives and Our Royal Fathers to call the Benue state Governor to order as his actions and continuous threat to the leadership of the Fulani Pastoralists by the governor is a serious threat to peaceful coexistence.
“That we appreciates the efforts being put by the Federal and States governments in addressing the security challenges facing the Fulani Pastoralist particularly cattle rustling , kidnapping and banditry.
“That we totally condemn the attempt to profile the Fulani race and urge the press should investigate the veracity of their stories before going to press.
“Finally, we are appealing to His Excellency President Mohammadu Buhari to Call the H.E Governor Samuel Ortom to order as his actions are a fundamental threat to peaceful coexistence and food security in Nigeria.”