Armed persons on Sunday killed a farmer in Ekiti State with residents saying they believe the victim was killed by armed herdsmen.
The victim, Olayemi Tunde, was murdered on Sunday in Ipao Ekiti, Ikole Local Government Area.
The incident occurred on Sunday afternoon, when the victim was returning home from his farm.
Mr. Olayemi, a commercial motorbike rider, had a farm at the Ipao farm settlement, where he had gone to harvest cassava.
The attack is coming two days after the state governor, Ayo Fayose, vowed to resist the attacks by armed herdsmen within the state.
Violence between herdsmen and farming communities has caused scores of deaths across Nigeria in 2018.
A skirmish in January between some herdsmen and Tiv farmers in Ekiti resulted in the death of two persons, a situation which was brought under control with the timely intervention of the governor.
The state also operates an anti-open grazing law which regulates the activities of the herdsmen in the communities.
Confirming Sunday’s murder, the Chairman of Ikole Local Government Area, Abiola Ajayi, gave details on how Mr. Olayemi was killed.
“The deceased was an okada operator who has a farm in the settlement. He had gone to his farm to harvest some cassava,” she said.
“He was with one other person. They were heading back to town from the farm and have loaded the motorbike with cassava when they saw some Fulani herdsmen coming towards them.
“The two of them were said to have been surprised at seeing the herdsmen. The herdsmen were said to have brought out their guns and the two of the farmers had to run for their life.
“The Bororos were said to have pursued the two men and eventually got Olayemi who they massacred like a cow.
“We have reported the matter to the nearest police station and the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) has since swung into action and sent two vehicles and they have gone to the scene of the murder to take the corpse and also commence investigation.”
The head of the local hunters in the community, Adebayo Odeyemi, who was obviously grieved by the incident, said the hunters had declared war on the herdsmen and would not allow a repeat of the incident.
“We haven’t attacked any herdsman but they have killed one person in the community now and right now we will ensure they are not allowed to do this again,” he said.
“We are valiant men, not cowards, and we will face them this time around defend the community, defend the farms. They have massacred one of us mercilessly and this won’t happen again.”
Efforts to get the police to respond to the development were unfruitful, as calls made to the Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Alberto Adeyemi, were not answered.
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