Governors of all six states in the south west have imposed a ban on open grazing of cattle across the region.
The decision was taken at a security stakeholders' meeting in Ondo State on Monday, January 25, 2021.
Conflict between herders and farmers caused by open grazing has in the past forced Oyo and Ekiti to create anti open grazing laws in the past, but Monday's announcement means they're also now banned in Ogun, Ondo, Osun, and Lagos.
The governors also placed a ban on night grazing, as well as herding of cattle by underage children.
"We will continue to support our security agencies to do their duties," Oyo State governor, Seyi Makinde, announced after the meeting.
Monday's announcement is the latest development over a controversy that erupted last week after Ondo State governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, ordered herders out of the state's forest reserves due to security concerns.
The governor said numerous accounts from kidnap victims had indicated that most kidnappers masquerade as herdsmen and use the forest reserves as hideouts for their operations.
The President Muhammadu Buhari-led government cautioned the governor on the legality of the eviction order, setting off a week of confrontation from numerous quaters that have once again questioned the unity of the Nigerian state.
A few other states have in the past placed a similar ban on open grazing as a measure to reduce conflicts between nomadic herdsmen, usually Fulani, and local farmers whose crops are usually destroyed by cattle.
The conflicts have led to hundreds of lives lost and property destroyed, especially in the nation's Middle Belt, with herdsmen usually blamed as the aggressors.
The Federal Government's attempted interventions into the contentious issue have failed to provide a lasting solution.
In a bid to douse the tension caused by last week's eviction notice, Ekiti State governor, Kayode Fayemi, said at Monday's meeting that the order was not to send herders out of Ondo as misconstrued in certain quarters.
"No one has sent anyone away from any state or region but all hands must be on deck to fight criminality," he said to the Fulani delegation at the meeting.
The governor urged herders to embrace modern breeding practices like grazing reserves, and resort to ranching of their cattle.