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Why Buhari has no power to order review of 368 Grazing Reserves in 25 States

…Says, “Action null and void, unconstitutional.”

by Achadu Gabriel, Kaduna

President Buhari

“Buhari has no power, under the constitution, or under the Land Use Act, to order a review of 368 Grazing Reserves across 25 states because the Federal Government never owned or mandated grazing reserves or routes.” 

This statement is contained in a release issued by Akioyamen Josephine, a constitutionally sound Nigerian, entitled: ‘Echoes from the madhouse; the case of Buhari and grazing reserves.’

Akioyamen Josephine, in a release obtained from the WhatsApp group relied on the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria-based facts and history.

According to Josephine, who analyzed Buhari’s order of reviews of grazing routes fact by facts, noted that, there was never any Federal law mandate on Grazing Reserved and Routes since 1960. 

“FACT 1: There was never any Federal Law mandate on Grazing Reserves and Routes since 1960.

“FACT 2: The only Grazing Reserve Law that existed was the Grazing Reserve Law of Northern Nigeria Law No. 4 of 1965. This law passed by the defunct Northern Regional Assembly was applicable only to the North.

“FACT 3: Western Region, Eastern Region, Midwest Region never enacted Grazing Reserves laws. Each took Ranching as state policies. However, they never prohibited open grazing either.

“FACT 4: The Northern Regional law turned 6.4 million hectares of land into Grazing Reserves and routes, stretching from Sokoto to Lokoja.  In Benue and Nasarawa, the reserve, measured about 17,000 square kilometres in size, and lies along the routes to Dedere on the North-West; Rufai and Azara on the North-East; Tunga on the East; Keana on the West; and Makurdi and Gbajimba on the South-West.

“FACT 5: The Grazing Reserve Law N.N. (Northern Nigeria) Law No. 4 of 1965 was inherited by the 19 states that were carved out of the area that was once the defunct Northern Region of Nigeria. More specifically in Benue it was christened the Grazing Reserve Law Cap 72 Laws of Benue, 2004.

“FACT 6: The Grazing Reserve Law Cap 72 Laws of Benue, 2004, was repealed by the Open Grazing Prohibition and Establishment of Ranches Law, 2017, and every right, privileges, obligations, etc., obtained under or appurtenant to the Grazing Reserve Law N.N. (Northern Nigeria) Law No. 4 of 1965 were extinguished.

“FACT 7: Grazing Reserves do not exist in Benue anymore. They never existed in states carved out of the defunct Western Region, Eastern Region and the Midwestern Region. 

“FACT 8: Buhari has no power, under the constitution, or under the Land Use Act, to  order a review of 368 Grazing Reserves across 25 states because the Federal Government never owned or mandated grazing reserves or routes,” Josephine stated. 

According to Josephine, “They (powers) belonged to the states carved out from the defunct Northern Region. It is the governors of those states, which have not repealed ‘The Grazing Reserve Law N.N. (Northern Nigeria) Law No. 4 of 1965’ that have the power to order this review, both under the Constitution and in accordance with the Land Use Act.

“FACT 9: Buhari’s action is  null and void because it is unconstitutional,” Akioyamen Josephine stated.

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