The governors of the six South-west states of Nigeria have condemned the killings in Igangan community of Ibarapa, Oyo State.
“We have just received with rude shock a premeditated attack on our people at Igangan, Ibarapa, Oyo State, in the early hours of today. This cowardly onslaught on a peaceful community has occasioned loss of lives and property on a large scale,” Governor Rotimi Akeredolu said on behalf of his colleagues.
“It is horrendous, callous, and highly provocative. All well-meaning Nigerians must condemn, in the strongest term possible, this latest assault on decency and communal harmony.”
Our correspondent obtained pictures and videos of severely hacked and bloodied human bodies. Residents said the gunmen stormed the community with over 20 motorcycles.
Taiwo Adeagbo, an official of Igangan Farmers’ Union, told this newspaper that the gunmen arrived around 12:40 a.m. on Sunday.
“Aside from killing our people, the Fulani herdsmen also set a petrol station ablaze and cars ablaze. They have also burnt the palace in Igangan.”
Residents said at least 15 persons have been confirmed dead in the attack.
While police are yet to speak on the incident, Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State pleaded with residents to be calm. He pledged to look into the incident.
“I have received the shocking news of the attacks on residents of Igangan, Ibarapaland, in the early hours of this morning. I am currently being briefed on the incidents. I urge residents to remain calm as security operatives are now in control of the situation,” Mr Makinde wrote in a Sunday statement.
South-west governors react
In his statement, Mr Akeredolu said a joint security meeting will be held to review the security situation in the South-west.
“While we will encourage the security agencies to get to the root of this latest act of provocation, we have directed the Commanders of the South West Security Network, Amotekun, to convene a joint security meeting of all Commanders in the South West with a view to commencing joint operations in the region immediately.”
He said “certain elements are bent on causing friction among the peoples of this country with the sole aim of achieving a pernicious end. They will stop at nothing until their set goal is realized. It is, therefore, incumbent on all lovers of peace and freedom to rise against this current regression into savagery.”
“We on our part are resolved to defend our people, their property, and all legitimate means of livelihood against both internal and external aggression. On this, there will be no compromise. We call on our people to remain vigilant and report any suspicious movement in their communities. In addition, they must be united in the task of defending our lives and properties. We cannot afford to fail,” he said.
The attack on Igangan comes months after a self-acclaimed activist, Sunday Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho, led a crowd to Igangan to eject the head of the Fulani community there, Salihu Abdulkadir.
He accused Mr Abdulkadir of backing criminal herdsmen whom he alleged were responsible for the kidnapping and killing of farmers and residents of the community. Mr Abdulkadir denied the allegation but he was nonetheless forcefully ejected from a community he had lived in for decades.
The federal and Oyo State governments frowned at the development, saying no citizen has the right to eject other citizens from wherever they wished to reside in the country.
Igangan residents said on Sunday that they believe the latest attack was a retaliation for the eviction of Mr Abdulkadir.
Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility
Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.
For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.
By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.
TEXT AD: To advertise here . Call Willie +2347088095401...