How Ariyo, Farmer Died in Herders’ Hands – Olure

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By Bayo Aka.

THE National President of Ogga Progressive Union (OPU), Mr. Bamidele Olure has described the alleged gruesome murder of a farmer, Mr. Ariyo Aina, of Ogga extraction by herdsmen as an act of wickedness.

Bamidele Olure who almost betrayed his emotion during a chat with The Graphic in Kabba, said the victim, Ariyo, a renowned and thriving farmer, allegedly had his life cut short by Fulani herdsmen on his farm.

According to him, Ariyo had woken up early that fateful day and headed towards his farm as it was his daily practice, adding that unknown to him, the herdsmen whose cattle  had been eating  his crops annually have laid a siege for him.

Olure disclosed further that an eyewitness account said the herdsmen whose number could not be ascertained waylaid their victim, pounced on him, machete him to death and thereafter decapitated his head from his body.

He disclosed that although there had been several herdsmen attacks on the farmers in Ogga and other neighboring communities, the brutal murder of Ariyo would be the first death recorded from such fracas.

While stating that Ogga is a community inhabited by people who are disposed to living with others peacefully, he disclosed that previous herdsmen attacks on farmers were reported to the Divisional Police Officer in Odo-Ere, headquarters of the Local Government Area.

Speaking further, Olure said the DPO thereafter organized a meeting between the herdsmen and farmers through which the herdsmen promised not to trespass any farmer’s farm and should they breach the promise, refunds would be made.

Olure noted that the perpetrators might probably have committed the crime in order not to pay for what their cattle had destroyed.

The union leader therefore reiterated appeal to the concerned authorities to deploy policemen and civil defence officers to Ogga community and its environs, noting that the distance  between Ogga and the Divisional Police Office at the Local Government headquarters is far.

He added that before reports could be made at the headquarters, many things such as the suspects running away as in the present case could happen.

“We however thank God for now that it is not more than one victim. What if the herdsmen had decided to swoop on the entire community, then everybody would have been killed before any police would know”, he said.

“All the other communities in Yagba West LGA like Omi, Ogbom, Igbaruku, Imela, Jegge have no police posts. They are all surrounded by massive forests where the herdsmen lodge and allow their cattle feed on the produce from people’s farms. The farms are the means of the people’s livelihood. When eaten or destroyed by these herdsmen, what are the farmers supposed to eat?,” he asked.

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