The Centre for Leadership Legacy International has condemned in strong terms what it described as lackadaisical attitude of Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State, authorities of Dekina local government, and traditional Institutions towards the ongoing herdsmen attack on Oganenigu community in Dekina local government area (LGA) which has been under siege by the herders for days.
A statement signed by the Lead Director of the Centre, Comrade Omonu Gowon-Nelson, explained that the latest round of attacks started when Odede village was razed to the ground in the early hours of Wednesday, 29 March, 2023.
The statement expressed disgust on the aloof disposition of Governor Bello, whom the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, recognises as the Chief Security Officer the State, of which Oganenigu community is a part.
“This is a matter relevant authorities in the state and Dekina LGA are familiar with, and why it’s taking so long for the governor to act calls for worry among the people.
“It would be recalled that a similar attack in March 2018, prompted Governor Yahaya Bello to visit Ojuwo-Ajomayegbi, where the massacre of innocent villagers took place. On that visit, the governor made series of promises aimed at addressing the frequent attacks on the community. None of the developmental promises were fulfilled, aside the instant deployment of security personnel.
“As for the latest round of carnage, trouble started, when insinuation and rumours started flying around about the large movement of armed men from Akande area of Bassa LGA towards Oganenigu community. Relevant authorities were alerted but nothing was done until Odede village ended in ruin,” the statement explained.
It further revealed that following the annihilation of Odede village and the series of fresh threats to extend the Odede horror to other parts of the community, the sick and aged men and women were traumatised and have become refugees in Anyigba, Iyale, Etutekpe etc.
“The situation in Oganenigu community as we speak is nothing short of the Hobbessian State of Nature, where life is lived in continual fear, and danger of violent death; the life of every inhabitant is solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.”
While reminding Governor Bello and other concerned authorities that the primary purpose of any responsible government is the security of lives and property, Comrade Omonu called for urgent intervention, to bring the people’s misery to an end, even as he made case for the location of a military or Mobile Police formation in the area to forestall further occurrences.
Oganenigu Community, which consists of about 13 fairly large villages, with Aloko as the Ward headquarters has been under recurrent attacks by dare-devil herdsmen since 2015. It’s located about 22 kilometers from River Benue and 47 kilometers from Dekina, the local government headquarters.