Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) has said it will continue to challenge the anti-grazing laws introduced by some state governments in court.
Alhaji Baba Ngelzarma, the National Secretary of the association, while speaking with newsmen in Abuja on Thursday said the pastoralists, who were largely uneducated, would view the anti-grazing laws, when implemented, as forcing them out of their ancestral and cultural way of earning a living.
According to him, implementing the laws will create another crisis in the country. He, however, noted that grazing reserves across the country had been devastated through encroachment by farmers, destruction by desertification or neglect on the part of the government.
In his words, ‘we are going to challenge this anti-grazing law in courts and some of us have taken the matter to international court because that is the only option left for us. This is a breach of the constitution and the fundamental human rights of our members. We are not against ranching. The pastoralist will embrace it but that cannot be right away but it will be overtime. You have to educate them to know the benefits of ranching. These pastoralists will take the law as something that is totally strange, a plot to take them away from what they inherited from their forefathers. They will see it as a failure on their part. If these grazing reserves that we have in the North can be maintained and rehabilitated, with the provision of boreholes and grasses, I see no reason why the pastoralist will continue to roam around’.
“We are sensitising our people to the need for them to remain peaceful; not to originate or look for trouble, not to encroach into peoples’ farms,’’ he said.