Terver Akase: Laws are obeyed not resisted – Note for Aliyu Tilde


The Benue State Open Grazing Prohibition and Ranches Establishment Law was not enacted to massage your ego. The law was made as the best answer to the violence caused by merchants of crisis and their fans like you.

The law stipulates in clear terms, the penalties for livestock impounded while openly grazing in the state.

It is therefore uncharitable for you to insinuate that the Benue State Government has been ‘stealing cows’ owned by Fulanis with an agenda to auction them to make money.

The law states:

21. Any livestock found grazing, wandering, herding in an area not designated as a ranch shall be impounded by the Department or any other person authorized by the Department in that behalf.

22. The Department or any other person so authorised may release the livestock impounded to the owner or Manager upon showing good cause and after paying the prescribed fine and expenses as may be determined by the Department.

23. Any livestock impounded under this law which is not claimed within seven (7) days of such impoundment shall-

(a) be sold on auction to the public; and
(b) the proceeds of such sale shall be deposited in the Consolidated Revenue Account of the State.

The law is also clear in section 20 on the punishment that awaits cattle rustlers:

20 (1) Any person(s) who rustles cattle, or other animals from any ranch commits an offence and shall be liable on conviction for imprisonment for a term of not less than three(3) years or One Hundred Thousand Naira (N100,000.00) per animal or both.

(2) Where a rustler:

(a) injures, or maims any person while carrying out his activities he shall on conviction be reliable to five (5) years imprisonment or a fine of Five Hundred Thousand Naira (N500,000.00) only or both;
(b) causes death, he shall be guilty of an offence of culpable homicide punishable under the provision of the penal code;

(3) a person convicted of cattle rustling may, in addition pay compensation to the victim or owner as the court may direct.

Tilde, the law won’t be repealed or amended because you find it unacceptable. If you own cattle and your animals are in Benue State, come seek permission to operate a ranch and stop grandstanding.

Some of you write about developed societies, but you fail to tell your readers why the said developed societies are what they are today. The answer is simple. In those societies, laws are obeyed not resisted. A particular section of such societies does not take up arms against the government to oppose a law.

Yours Terver Akase.


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