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Herdsmen kill nursing mother, baby, in Ogun community

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Segun Ayinde, Abeokuta

Suspected Fulani herdsmen have killed eight persons, including a nursing mother and her baby in a fresh attack at two villages in Owode-Ketu in Yewa North local government area of the state.

The Oselu of Iselu, Oba Ebenezer Akinyemi, disclosed this when Governor Dapo Abiodu, top government functionaries and heads of security agencies visited the community on Monday to find a lasting solution to the menace.

The Oba, who lamented that the killer herdsmen went on rampage, killing their men, raping their women and also feeding their cattle on the maize planted by the farmers, called on the governor to order the herdsmen to leave their lands.

He said that the nursing mother and her baby, including four other people, were killed in Igbo-Oro, while the three others were killed in Asa, saying that if the state government failed to find a solution to the problem, the people might engage the herdsmen in a gun battle.

The monarch said “the problem at Ketu is the Fulani herdsmen are killing our people in Ketu, raping our women, using the cows to eat the corn of our farmers, burning houses. They have killed people in Ketu, Igbo-Oro, Asa, Oja-Odan, Iselu. We want the governor to find solution to the matter because our people can’t live with the killer herdsmen.”

When our correspondent visited Igbo-Oro, in the governor’s entourage, the village had become empty as the indigenes had vacated their homes for the fear of being attacked again by the killer herdsmen.

The village head of Igbo-Oro, Chief Tajideen Akorede, said that the killer herdsmen invaded the village around 9:pm on Monday night and set ablaze their houses, maize, cars and motorcycles before entering the homes of the dwellers to kill them in their sleep.

Akorede said that many people had fled their homes especially women because their security could not be guaranteed, appealing to Governor Abiodun to come to their aid.

“This happened at night when people had slept. The Fulani came started shooting people, they burn houses and machete some people in their sleep. They burnt people’s cars and their bikes.”

“We want the governor to take care of the situation. Our security is not guaranteed and that is why people have left the village only some men stay back.”

Abiodun, while addressing the people of Owode-Yewa and its environs, expressed his condolences to the families of those murdered by the killer herdsmen, urging them not to panic as the government had set up a special task force comprising the police, military, civil defence, Department of State Security Service and local vigilante to secure their lives and properties.

The governor said that he had also organised a stakeholders’ meeting where five Northern governors, who are Fulani, would be present including the people of Owode-Yewa to discuss issues on how to put an end to the Fulani/herders crisis in the state.

“When I was told about the situation, we immediately called a meeting with the security agencies in the state. We have set up a special task for Yewa land. I have bought new vehicles and motorcycles for them. The task force comprises of the civil defence, police, soldiers, DSS and local vigilante. They will stay with you here not coming and going back to the capital.

“By tomorrow, I shall hold a stakeholder’ meeting with my five colleagues who are Fulani governors from the North and we will call some of you into the meeting. We are all Nigerians and we must find a way to live with ourselves peace.”

“Nobody should be killing anybody; nobody should be killing another person’s cow; another person should not be eating the farm crops of another person and I want you all to still exercise patience. We shall take care of the medical bills of all those at the hospital and we will take care of the properties of those lost in the menace,” he added.

Earlier, the Olu of Ilaro and paramount ruler of Yewaland, Oba Kehinde Olugbenle, urged the people in the area to remain vigilant, appealing to them to cooperate with security task force set up by the government to secure the area.

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