Tension is rising in Obokofia, a community in Ohaji/Egbema local council of Imo State as herdsmen were said to have vowed to remain in the community’s lands after the deadline to vacate.
On Wednesday, some herders shot sporadically into the air to scare community people and to resist the ultimatum given them to leave the community.
The tension in Imo is building as President Muhammadu Buhari met with security chiefs in Aso Rock in Abuja, with the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, saying the strategy adopted by security chiefs to tackle insecurity in the country was working.
Despite intervention of the Ohaji/Egbema Transition Committee chairman, Damian Ezeru, which calmed down the situation, the herders have stayed put in the community.
Tension was worsened after a security meeting scheduled for yesterday could not take place as the TC chairman was said to be in an official meeting alongside his colleagues with the governor of the state, Emeka Ihedioha. It was learned that the security council meeting will now hold today.
Contacted, Special Adviser to the governor on Media, Steve Osuji, said: “On the herders and farmers crisis, we just appeal to people to respect each others’ rights.
Don’t invade people’s farms and destroy them. We will continue to engage the leadership of Hausa community in the state to advise their people to live peacefully with their host communities.”
Court dismisses Miyetti Allah suit against open grazing law
A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, while dismissing the suit filed by the Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore challenging the 2017 Open Grazing Prohibition and Establishment Law passed by the Benue State House of Assembly, awarded a cost of N100,000 against the plaintiff to be paid to all the defendants before any other step can be taken in the suit.
Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore had approached the court seeking a mandatory injunction against Benue State Government from implementing the laws as passed by Benue State |House of Assembly. Delivering judgment yesterday, Justice Okon Abang held that the failure of the plaintiff to comply with an earlier order of the court to amend their originating summons was a fault on their part.
The order, according to Mr Abang, was made in December 2017 by a judge of the Federal High Court in Abuja, Bamidele Quadri.
He had ordered the plaintiff to amend their originating summons as there was no valid originating summons before the court. Justice Abang said the judge had given the plaintiff five days to comply with the order of the court but the plaintiff brought the summons before the court on May 31, 2019.
With this, Mr Abang held that the plaintiff was nonchalant, developed a carefree attitude and did nothing for upwards of 19 months. He stressed that the plaintiff treated the court order with disdain and levity. “For 19 months, since December till date, the plaintiff failed to file the amended originating summons following an order of a judge of the Federal High Court to do so within five days.
The plaintiff was in court when this order was made but failed to comply or appeal the order. No valid originating summons was filed by them. “For them to have not done anything for 19months, they should have themselves to blame. The court order remains valid. If the originating summons is not filed, there would be no way the defendants would file a counter-affidavit.
“The purported originating summons filed on May 31, 2019, is a nullity and should not have been filed. “In the eyes of the law, there is no valid originating summons filed by the plaintiff. Why did the plaintiff not comply with the court order if they know they have a good case? “The court should not only bark but should also bite and break bones where necessary, but, not the bones of the parties involved in the matter.
The matter is also an abuse of court processes, where the court process is abused, the suit should be dismissed. “The plaintiff’s suit is hereby dismissed with a cost of N100,000 to be paid to all the 14 defendants before taking any other step,” the judge ruled.
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