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Stray animals: BASEPA arraign, gets 2 months sentence against 3 persons for destroying tree plantations in Bauchi


By Akanji Alowolodu, Bauchi

For allowing their animals to stray on the streets and destroyed trees planted, Bauchi State  Environmental Mobile Court convicted and sentenced three persons to two months imprisonment. 

The trio were convicted and sentenced for negligence by releasing their animals to roam about the streets thereby destroying trees planted by the Agency along Sam Njoma Street, New GRA, Bauchi.

The three persons, Pauline Anozie, Christian Nwankwo and Abdulkareem Mohammed all of Sam Njoma Street, New GRA Bauchi were arraigned and accused of releasing their animals, roaming about and destroyed about forty numbers of trees, part of the two 270 planted by the Agency last March during the celebration of the 2022 World Forestry Day.

The Prosecutor had asked the court to compel the defendants to compensate the Agency for the forty seedlings destroyed by the Animals, the cost of replanting,  pay the money spent for two months watering of the trees and to also compensate the Agency the money spent on feeding their arrested stray animals.

The offences according to the prosecution contravened section Section 5, sub section 2a, Paragraph 4, punishable under section 34 sub section 2 and section 46 of the Bauchi State Environmental laws 2017.

In her ruling, the presiding judge sentenced them to two Months Imprisonment each at the Bauchi Correctional Facility or option of fine of N3500 each, they are also to pay the sum of N4000 for the destroyed trees and another N4000 for labour and replanting of the trees and the cost of watering as the Agency applied.

Briefing newsmen after the judgement, the Director General of the Agency Dr Ibrahim Kabir said that the accused persons released their animals roaming about and in the cause, destroyed trees planted by the Agency along Sam Njoma Street, which is an offence and punishable according to BASEPA law.

According to him, the arrest of the animals, arraignment and the prosecution of the owners showed how the Agency consider trees and it was also meant to serve as deterrent to others as not to negligently allow their animals roaming the streets and destroying not only trees but people’s properties and sometimes causes accidents and other inconveniences.

He also used the occasion to call on the general public to desist from neglect release of animals and frowned that anyone found wanting will not be spared,as the law is no respecter to anyone and urged them to continue supporting the Agency to deliver its mandates of keeping the state clean and the environment protected.

The Legal Adviser of the Agency, Barr Haruna Ibrahim said that he is happy with the judgement and hope it will serves as deterrent to others for the overall betterment of all.

Recall that, the Agency on Tuesday, during its routine surveillance patrol at Sam Njoma street New GRA Bauchi some arrested stray animals, belonging to the above culprits, roaming about and destroying trees planted by the Agency as contained in a statement by Isyaka Laminu Badamasi, SA Media DG BASEPA. 

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