Violence erupted in Igangan in the Ibarapa North Local Government Area of Oyo State on Friday when a popular Yoruba activist, Chief Sunday Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho, reportedly stormed the Fulani settlement in the town to eject the Seriki Fulani, Salihu Abdukadir, and some other herdsmen accused of fuelling security problems in the area.
Unconfirmed reports claimed that some persons were killed while properties worth several millions of naira were set ablaze during the clash which occurred in the evening.
Although Igboho could not be reached as calls to his telephone line indicated that he was out of reach, residents of Igangan, however, said that Fulani fighters killed at least one youth from Igboora while two others sustained injuries from gunshots.
SaharaReporters had reported that the settlement of Abdulkadir was allegedly set on fire by aggrieved youths on Friday night.
Abdulkadir told SaharaReporters in Ibadan that he, his wives and children were sent out of the settlement, adding that 11 vehicles and houses were burnt in the process.
He told SaharaReporters that despite assurance by the police and the people of the state, his house was burnt in the presence of security agents.
He said, “As we speak, we are in the bush. Our cars, numbering about 11, have been burnt. Some of my children sustained injuries, and we are looking for a way to get them to the hospital. My children have left their houses for the bush. We need the government to help us. Police, Operation Burst and other security agencies were there when they set my house ablaze.”
Chairman of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association in the state, Alhaji Ibrahim Jiji, also confirmed the incident to our correspondent on the phone.
He said, “As we usually say, not all Fulani people are evil. Good people are among us. What can we call this now? The man is a gentleman and see how he was chased out of his house. We need the government to act now,” he said.
The Seriki also told our correspondent that one Fulani woman was killed. He said he had fled the town before Igboho returned on Friday.
Both sides’ claims could not be independently verified as of press time on Friday.
Igboho had last week issued a seven-day notice to quit to Seriki and his associates.
Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State had in a broadcast warned people fuelling the ethics crisis to desist from such acts.
Despite this, Igboho and his supporters stormed Igangan on Friday afternoon.
Addressing the youths, Igboho said, “They started deploying soldiers here yesterday (Thursday). When our people were being kidnapped and killed, there were no soldiers to secure them.
Reacting, the Oyo State PPRO, Mr. Olugbenga Fadeyi, said, “Tactical police teams with Operation Burst are on ground to give maximum security protection while efforts are on to ascertain the situation there.”
Meanwhile, on Friday, Makinde said that his government would not allow anyone hiding under the guise of ethnic interest to perpetrate a crisis in the state, Punch reports.
Makinde said the war to be waged by the state and the security agencies were against criminal elements, irrespective of their tribes, religions or creed.
He added that his administration would not allow anyone to threaten the state’s peace by acting unlawfully as such was against the nation’s constitution.
The governor, who spoke while receiving the new Commissioner of Police in the state, Mrs Ngozi Onadeko, said the state government would not relent in prioritising the welfare of security agencies in the state.
The governor said, “For people stoking ethnic tension, they are criminals, and once you get them, they should be arrested and treated like common criminals. For this administration, the major pillar for us is security, because we know that all the good economic plans we have won’t be possible in an atmosphere of chaos and insecurity.”
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