Four killed as herdsmen, farmers clash in Ogun (PHOTOS)

Abeokuta May 03, 2019

Four persons have been killed as suspected herdsmen and farmers clashed in Iwoye area of Imeko-Afon Local Government Area of Ogun State.

The incident, which has ignited tension in the agrarian community, also left some police officers seriously injured.

To douse tension and restore normalcy, the state Commissioner of Police, Bashir Makama, visited the town for on-the-spot assessment and addressed stakeholders on the need to ensure peaceful coexistence.

New Telegraph gathered that the Divisional Crime Officer (DCO) in charge of Imeko and a police inspector were shot in one of the attacks.

Our correspondent learnt fighting broke out after suspected Fulani herdsmen made their cattle to drink from the community stream and polluted the water.

A native, who allegedly challenged the proprietary of the action of the herdsmen, was said to have been shot dead in the ensuing altercation.

The killing sparked crisis and made the community members to mobilise for reprisal attacks.

However, in an attempt by policemen to apprehend some of the perpetrators, herdsmen, who had laid an ambush, opened fire on the security agents, killing one of the civilian accomplices of the policemen.

The slain civilian was identified as Kabiru Ogunrinde while the DCO and inspector were injured by the assailants.

A resident, who spoke with our correspondent on phone yesterday, said six persons have so far been killed from both sides of the divide.

Reacting, a member-elect of the House of Representatives, Olaifa Jimoh Aremu, representing Egbado North/Imeko-Afon Federal Constituency, condemned the killings. 

Aremu enjoined the law enforcement agents to restore peace and tranquillity in the ancient town and the entire Imeko-Afon Local Government.

When contacted yesterday, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Abimbola Oyeyemi, confirmed the clash but said only one death had been ascertained by the police command.

He said the state Commissioner of Police, Bashir Makama, had visited the scene and investigation commenced to unravel the circumstances surrounding the incident.

The PPRO, however, blamed the incident on migrant herdsmen from neighbouring countries, who invaded the community and subsequently escaped after wrecking havoc.

Oyeyemi, who stated that no arrest had been made yet, said the injured policemen were recuperating in the hospital.

He said, “The CP was there today with the police management team and we have stationed our men in the town, including men from PMF, SARS, Anti-kidnapping and other tactical squads.

“The CP has addressed all the stakeholders, including the Fulani community and natives of Iwoye community and their Kabiyesis (traditional rulers). He has warned them to live in peace and whoever foments trouble will have himself to blame.

” We know of one casualty now, we even saw the corpse. Though we heard rumour that from the other side of the stream which is in Benin Republic, some people were actually attacked there. The CP also met with the commissioner of police from Benin Republic at the border and they had a joint meeting and they are going to set up a joint committee to prevent future occurrences.”