BY HEMBADOON ORSAR, Makurdi
A Makurdi chief magistrate court presided over by Isaac Ajim, has remanded in prison custody, a herdsman Gambo Mohammed, for violating anti open grazing law, criminal conspiracy, causing grievous hurt, culpable homicide and illegal possession of firearms.
When the case came up, the prosecutor ASP Imo Edward, told the court that on the 2nd November, 2017 at about 0730hrs, the DPO Logo Division received a distress call from the unit commander, Police Mobile Force 13 Squadron, on special duty at Ayilamo that some Fulani herdsmen stormed Azege village shot and killed a 40 year fisherman Ortse Kwaghdoo and also shot one Mr Akaa Hingir, in the chest and he sustained serious injury.
According to him, during Police investigation, one Mallam Gambo Ibrahim Mohammad, was arrested and a locally made pistol was with 3 live ammunitions were recovered from him.
The prosecutor informed the court that Mallam Gambo committed an offence under section 97,248,222 of the Penal Code Law of Benue State and section 19(7) of the Anti Open Grazing Prohibition and Ranches Establishment Law of Benue State 2017 punishable under section 3(1) of the robbery and firearms act.
No plea was taken for want of jurisdiction.
The chief magistrate ordered the accused to be reminded at the Makurdi Medium Prison and adjourned the case to February 9, 2018 for further mentioning.
It would be recalled that the Anti-open Grazing Prohibition and Ranches Establishment Law was signed by Benue State governor, Samuel Ortom, on the May 22nd, 2017 but went into effect on November 1st, 2017.
Mallam Gambo, who committed the offence on November 2, 2017 is the first offender since the law came into effect.
When contacted, the Attorney General and commissioner for Justice, Micheal Gusa said the law is made to protect both herdsmen and farmers and it would not spell anyone who breaks it.
He urged the public to report trespasses to security agencies and the Livestock Guards and warns against people taking laws into their hands.