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Panel wants Gombe monarchs punished for selling grazing reserves

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The Gombe State Committee on Grazing, Forest, Game Reserves and Cattle Routes has asked the state government to punish traditional rulers and local government chairmen for encroaching on and selling gazetted grazing reserves in the state.

The committee’s Chairman,  Assistant Inspector of Police Zubairu Mu’azu (retd.), stated this on Friday while presenting his committee’s report to Governor Muhammadu Yahaya at the Gombe Government House.

He said, “A total of 1,599 persons were confirmed to have encroached on the six gazetted grazing reserves; 3,623 encroached on cattle routes and 911 encroached on forest reserves.”

Mu’azu said the infractions were committed by both traditional rulers and local government chairmen in the state and “as a result of these some have obtained Certificates of Occupancy to legalise their illegality in Wawazange, Amada, and others.”

The chairman urged the government to punish traditional rulers and local government bosses who flouted the gazetted reserves using relevant laws.

Mu’azu said, “Government should sanction all local government councils and traditional rulers who unlawfully authorised the purchase of gazetted forest reserves and cattle routes in accordance to the provision of Chieftaincy Law and 139, 142 Penal Code Law.”

Governor Yahaya, after receiving the report, promised to look into the various recommendations and avowed his administration’s commitment to entrenching peace and development in the state.

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