Ola Ajayi – Ibadan
IN order to avert another herders-farmers clash in Oyo, a Fulani herder, Ali Manu, has been arrested by the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Oyo State Command for allegedly leading 100 cows to a five-acre cassava farm at Abidioke Village in Ibarapa North Local Government Area and destroyed it.
The herder was said to have destroyed part of the farm about three weeks ago.
The farm was said to belong to a resident of Igangan whose name was given as Mr Bolanle Oyinlola.
According to the farmer, it was around 7 pm on Friday that some people called to inform him that his farm had been invaded by three herders.
The farmer told Vanguard saying, “When the cattle grazed on my farm three weeks ago, about one acre of my cassava plantation was destroyed by the cattle. I didn’t ask for any compensation; I just warned them never to let such a thing repeat itself again. But, I was shocked when I was alerted about the latest havoc on my farm on Friday, December 6,” he said.
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The suspect was later arrested by the NSCDC Agro Rangers Team in the area.
Reacting to the allegations, the suspect said: “Oyinlola is known to me. He has cassava, maize and plantain plantation at the settlement. Truly, my cattle grazed on his cassava farm three weeks ago, but my master (Alhaji Ali) begged him and promised never to let that happen again.”
“I saw some strange cattle near our hut earlier in the evening but I don’t know the herders; they are strangers and were just passing by.”
The state Commandant of the NSCDC in the state, Mr Iskitu Akinsanya, said that the command would not tolerate any act of lawlessness in the state.
Mr Akinsanya said, “The establishment of the Agro Rangers Team by the Commander General of NSCDC, Alhaji Gana Muhammadu, has started yielding results. The creation of the special team would guarantee the security of agro-allied investments across the state. Food from farmers and meat from the herders can help in boosting the economy.”
A team of NSCDC Agro Rangers was recently inaugurated in Ogbomoso, Eruwa and Iseyin area of the state to foster peace between the farmers and the herders.