Fears are rife in Irele Ekiti, in Ikole LGA of Ekiti State, following an attack on three farmers by suspected armed herdsmen.
The area has been the hotbed of a prolonged conflict between herders and farmers despite several rapproachement and other government interventions.
Tuesday’s incident is coming barely a month after two farmers were shot dead by persons believed to be herdsmen in Isaba-Ekiti, in the same local government area.
The victims sustained severe and life threatening cuts, and were rushed to a hospital where they are currently receiving treatment.
Witnesses reported that the assailants, numbering six, and armed had stormed the farm settlement in the early hours of Tuesday and unleashed mayhem on the three farmers.
It was further gathered that the attackers, had demanded money from the victims during the attack, and were infuriated when their expectations were not met.
They were said to have made attempts to rape the women.
“The women were unable to meet up with the demand as they said they were only with just N200 with them,” a resident at the settlement, who did not want to be named for safety reasons, said.
“The ‘herdsmen’ collected all the money found in them and made attempt to forcefully sleep with the women.
“The refusal of the women to grant their demand for such immoral act led to the brutal attack before they fled the scene.
“The women were so macheted to the extent that it will take the grace of God for them to survive because they have lost so much of blood.”
When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Sunday Abutu, confirmed the attack on the three women, saying investigations have begun in a bid to arrest the perpetrators.
“Yes, we got the report this morning that three persons were attacked and I can tell you that they are responding to treatment in the hospital,” said Mr Abutu.
“We have commenced investigation into the attack and the criminals will soon be arrested.”
He urged residents of the community to remain calm and support the police with relevant and accurate information that would help.
Criminals, masquerading as herders, have serially been accused of perpetrating kidnapping and robberies across the nation.
The last attack which led to the death of two farmers had led to state-wide protest, calling for action by the government.
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