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Senate President Akpabio Stands Firm as Heated Debate Ensues Over Open Grazing Ban

Northern Senators oppose bill, Akpabio emphasizes cows are not citizens

In a fiery session at the Red Chamber of the Nigerian Senate, Senate President Godswill Akpabio stood his ground as heated debates erupted over the proposed ban on open grazing in the country. The bill, sponsored by Senator Titus Zam, aims to resolve the long-standing conflicts between herders and farmers by prohibiting open grazing nationwide and promoting the establishment and management of ranches.

However, opposition to the bill arose from Senators Danjuma Goje of Gombe and Adamu Aliero of Kebbi, both representing the northern region. They argued that the bill infringes upon the fundamental rights of citizens by limiting the free movement of herders and their cattle. Cattle rearing and ranching activities are predominantly practiced in the northern region, and the senators reasoned that any legislation should be inclusive of the entire country rather than a specific section.

In response, Senate President Akpabio made a compelling point, asserting that cows should not be considered citizens of Nigeria and, therefore, do not possess the same rights as human beings. He stated, “Cows are not citizens of Nigeria, Senator Aliero, are you arguing with me? The section you are referring to is talking about citizens of Nigeria. And cows are not citizens of Nigeria. Cows can come from Niger, Chad, or anywhere.”

Despite the passionate opposition, the bill eventually passed after a voice vote conducted by Akpabio. It has now been referred to the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Judiciary, and Legal Matters for further review, with a deadline of four weeks for their recommendations.

If enacted into law, this legislation promises to address the challenges and conflicts associated with cattle rearing by implementing a more structured and sustainable approach to the industry. The proposed Commission will play a crucial role in managing the farmers/herders crisis, further emphasizing the need for its passage.

As the nation awaits the outcome of the committee’s review, Nigerians from various regions and sectors anxiously anticipate the resolution of this contentious issue.

Efecha Gold
Efecha Gold
Multimedia Expert, Journalist, and Singer.


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