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In Plateau Lawmakers summon 2 commissioners over grazing reserve

He explained that the nitty-gritty about the policy ought to be known, and well discussed with the traditional rulers and relevant stakeholders before it should be implemented.

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The Plateau House of Assembly has directed the state commissioners for Information and Agriculture to appear before its executive session to brief it on the grazing reserve policy.

The commissioners were summoned on Tuesday following the motion at adjournment raised by a member representing Mikkang constituency, Mr Na'anlong Daniel.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Chief Audu Ogbeh, recently announced that 11 states of the federation had donated 55 hectares of land for grazing reserve.

The minister had said Plateau was among the 11 states that donated land for the policy.

According to Daniel, the lack of adequate awareness on the issue of grazing reserve could generate a lot of tension in the state.

He explained that the nitty-gritty about the policy ought to be known, and well discussed with the traditional rulers and relevant stakeholders before it should be implemented.

``Mr Speaker, the way and manner Plateau Government is handling the issue of grazing reserve is generating a lot of tension in the state.

``There is no adequate awareness, and this is causing serious confusion among citizens because from the feelers, this may be a time bomb on us.

``I learnt my constituency was mentioned among those which had donated land for the grazing reserve; unfortunately, as a representative of the people, I am not aware of such moves.

``This issue is beyond political party, it is beyond tribe and religion; this is an issue that if not carefully tackled will do a lot harm for the common Plateau people.

``So, I urge this honourable House to summon those in charge of this proposed policy to come and provide us, and indeed the general public, with adequate information about it, `` he said.

Contributing, a member representing Riyom constituency, Mr Daniel Dem, urged that sensitive issues like the grazing reserve should be handled with caution.

He said the state government ought to have done enough sensitisation on the matter to the populace.

He said reports making the rounds indicated that three local governments of the state had donated lands.

``List of states that have donated lands were published, and report have it that three local governments in Plateau have donated lands and nobody has come out to say anything about it.

``Mr Speaker, if government have not debunked such reports, it then means that implementation had started already.

``The grazing reserve bill is still before the National Assembly but implementation would seem to have started in Plateau; this is quite unfortunate.

``Such policies will demand serious consultation so as to avert any unforeseen acrimony and rancour in the state, `` he said.

After contribution from members, the House directed that the Commissioners for Information and Agriculture should appear before its executive session for better explanation on the matter. 

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