Abia Assembly debates anti-grazing bill to check herdsmen menace
The Abia House of Assembly has begun the consideration of anti-grazing Bill in order to check the menace of suspected herdsmen in the State, Deputy Speaker, Mr Cosmos Ndukwe, has said.
Ndukwe told a news conference at the assembly complex in Umuahia on Wednesday that the bill was initiated in response to public demand for a legislation to arrest the phenomenon in the state.
He said the bill, entitled: HAB 36-Control of Nomadic Activities, Rearing and Prohibition of Grazing Routes/Reserves in Abia State Bill 2016,' had passed its first reading.
Ndukwe added that the absence of anti-grazing law had made it difficult to prosecute herdsmen, who allegedly fomented violence and destruction of farmlands in different parts of the state.
The deputy speaker said that the House passed a resolution on Tuesday ordering the immediate retirement of Mrs Uzoma Ukeje, a Chief Magistrate in the Osisioma Magisterial Division.
He said Ukeje, who was due for retirement in Dec. 2015, having attained the retirement age of 60, was still in service.
Ndukwe said the House Committee on Public Petition, which investigated the petition against her, indicted her for violating the law on retirement.
He said that following the recommendation of the House, Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu directed her to proceed on retirement without further delay.
Ndukwe said that the governor had also, in line with the recommendation of the House, dissolved the board of the State Judicial Service Commission, following the expiration of its tenure.
The deputy speaker, who is the Chairman of House Committee on Information, said that nine bills would soon be passed, adding that some of them had passed first and second readings. – NAN.