The Governor of Kogi State, Alhaji Yahaya Bello should be held responsible for the escalation of crisis in Kogi State.
A statement by Apapa Oodua Koya, (AOKOYA) warned that the Governor’s partisan position on the killings in Ogga, a native community in Kogi will worsen the lingering feud.
The statement signed by AOKOYA Secretary for Strategy, Col Abimbola Sowunmi (retd) and Deputy Secretary for Publicity, Ismail Abiodun said that the Kogi Governor ordered armed police men to invade Ogga community leading to fracas and shooting of many innocent people.
“The people are bleeding as we write. We urge Nigerians to locate the crisis in Kogi within historical context. A Yoruba man Aina Aiyenigba Ariyo was beheaded in the most savage manner by a Fulani herdsmen in Ogga.
“The said Fulani men had earlier invaded the farm of the late Ariyo prompting his cows to eat up crops belonging to Ariyo. When Ariyo complained, he was met with instant injustice: His head was severed.
“His wife and children watched as his head was tumbling up and down while the Fulani men laughed. The family began to run away. They were pursued by the armed herdsmen. They later went back to the beheaded farmer and started digging knives in his stomach. Not done, the Fulani men started licking the blood of the slain and chanting incantation in Fulfude.’
“This is a savage culture and a brute civilization.
One of the worst things was that community leaders went to retrieve the corpse but the Fulani men chased them with their cutlasses.
AOKOYA said that when the incidence was reported to the State Governor, he did nothing blaming the community for not allowing the cows to feed on Mr Ariyo’s farm.
“The whole Yoruba communities in Kogi were perplexed that Mr Yahaya Bello made no attempt to look for the killers of Mr Ariyo. He didn’t pay any condolence visit. He felt unconcerned and even mocked the family of the late Mr Ariyo.
“We are surprised that Yahaya Bello suddenly realized the importance of human lives when the community retaliated by killing some Fulani herdsmen.
“What the Ogga people did was a preemptive attack. No sooner had Mr Ariyo was beheaded than the Fulani armed men regrouped and planned to attack the entire community. They indeed invaded the community.
“Youths in the town already aware and had made preparations for the attack. In the ensuing battle, some Fulani men lay dead while many Ogga people were also wounded.
“Since this incidence, Yahaya Bello has given Ogga community leaders seven days to fish out the killers or he would dethrone the traditional rulers and even remove elected officials in the affected communities.
“This is nothing but segregation and selective justice. Yahaya Bello is anxious to please the Fulani herdsmen whose lives he thinks are more important than that of the innocent people of Kogi State.
“We wish to notify Nigerians that as early as last year January, a large consignment of Fulani herdsmen had invaded the Government Reserved Forests in the Yoruba part of Kogi.
“They came with a letter written in Hausa to the extent that they were given authority to settle in these forests by a Northern Emir. Ogga, Aginmi, Ejuku and communities in Moppa complained to the governor but he did nothing. The armed Fulani had since settled in these communities.
“We say that the Governor must be held responsible for continuous outbreak of hostilities in the Ogga region. The Governor must be held responsible for any further death in these communities.