Tension Grips Enugu Community over Farmers, Herdsmen Disagreement


Christopher Isiguzo in Enugu
Tension has enveloped the sleepy Adani community in Uzo-Uwani council area of Enugu State over an alleged misunderstanding between farmers and suspected herdsmen resulting in a shooting spree.

Adani community is a few kilometres away from Ukpabi Nimbo where herdsmen invaded over a year ago, leading to the gruesome murder of several persons and destruction of property worth millions of naira.

THISDAY checks revealed that in the latest attack which reportedly occurred last weekend at Adani forest, there was a shoot-out between the herdsmen and the farmers leading to injuries sustained by some persons and killing of some cows.

The youths of the community were alleged to have shared the meat.  Trouble was said to have broken out when some of the natives got to their farm and saw cattle grazing their crops.  The locals reportedly told the herdsmen to leave their farmland but the herdsmen refused to leave and continued grazing their cattle in the farm.
Apparently incensed by the refusal of the herdsmen to vacate their farmland, the natives allegedly mobilised themselves and tried to forcibly evict the herdsmen from their farmlands.

In the process, a bloody fight broke out between the locals and the herdsmen.
It was gathered that during the fight, firearms and other dangerous weapons were freely used.
The locals reportedly overpowered the herdsmen and drove them out of the farm.
During the fight, a Fulani man was allegedly shot while several cows were reportedly slaughtered.
The victim was said to be receiving treatment at a hospital in Adani as at press time.

The state Police Public Relations Officer, Ebere Amaraizu, who confirmed the latest incident at Adani, said the police were collaborating with sister security agencies to ensure that there was no breakdown of law and order in the town.
Amaraizu said the police want peace in the area to be sustained and would not tolerate any acts of lawlessness in the area.

He debunked the rumours that Adani was deserted due to alleged attack on the herdsmen and cows at Adani forest by some group of persons.
According to him, the incident revolves around some set of alleged “mischief makers in the community who shot and killed some cows and shared their meat inside the forest after allegedly injuring a pastoralist who is now responding to treatment at Our Lady Health of the Sick Hospital Adani.”
Amaraizu however maintained that the situation never gave rise to any panic or disturbance or people deserting the community.

He said people were going about their normal lawful business and social activities in Adani.
“The community leaders and the Sarkin Fulani, of Uzo-Uwani, Alhaji Tijani are meeting with a view to resolving the issues as suspects in the alleged dastardly act have been identified for necessary action.
“The command, however, warns in strong terms against any activity by any group or persons capable of truncating the existing peace in the state,” Amaraizu said.