Herdsmen Kill One in Kogi Community

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Yekini Jimoh in Lokoja

Ogga community in Yagba West Local Government Area of Kogi State has been attacked by some suspected Fulani herdsmen, killing one person.

According to a source in the community, a farmer, Mr. Ariyo Aina, 35, was allegedly killed by the Fulani herdsmen on his way to the farm on May 18.

Also, the National President of Ogga Progressive Union (OPU), Mr. Bamidele Olure, while speaking with journalists on phone yesterday in Lokoja, Aina was murdered on his way to his farm at about 9a.m. last Saturday.

He said the herdsmen victim left his home for the farm at about 9a.m. last Saturday, but to was his slain body that was found by other farmers who were going to the their farms thereafter.

Olure said: “There were several machete cuts on his head and body, and we believe it is the handiwork of the Fulani herdsmen, because they are known for such record of killings in the area.

“Aina had had several altercations with Fulani herdsmen in his farm over the destruction of his crops by their cattle.

‘’The deceased had reported the matter to the police up to 11 times, but police had insisted that Aina should provide an evidence to show that the destruction of his farm was done by cattle.

“However, last year, Aina was able to capture one of the cows (calf) in his farm and brought it to the police station as evidence.

‘’That was when the police arrested the Fulani herdsmen and they were made to pay compensation to the late Aina.

‘’Apart from eating up and destroying his planted crops by the cattle, Aina had also accused the Fulani herdsmen of destroying his yam barn and cutting the yams to pieces for their cattle to eat. ‘’We are appealing to the police to investigate the matter and ensure that the culprits are brought to book.”

The OPU president further said the government had last Sunday deployed soldiers and policemen to the community to ensure safety.

He appealed to the police authorities to deploy policemen permanently to man the abandoned police post in Ogga, which had been renovated by the community.

Olure said the community through self-effort had provided a police post, but was abandoned by the police on the excuse of ‘no manpower’ for the post.

“We, therefore, need police and security officers to be permanently on ground in the community because we have made the necessary facilities available,’’ Olure said.

The state Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. William Aya, confirmed the incident but said the case was reported at the Police division in Odo-Ere last Saturday.

Meanwhile, the Kogi State Governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, has vowed to bring the perpetrators of the dastardly act to book, and assured the people that his government would do everything possible to put an end to the ugly trend.

Bello, in a statement by his Director-General of Media and Publicity, Mr. Kingsley Fanwo, yesterday restated that the lives of every citizen and inhabitant of the state is very important to him, hence the heavy investment to ensure adequate security in the
state.