By Emmanuel Ugwu in Umuahiaand Olakiitan Victor in Ado Ekiti
With the increasing uneasiness caused by deadly attacks by Fulani herdsmen, Abia State Governor, Okezie Ikpeazu has concluded plans to deploy the State Vigilante Services (AVS), popularly known as Bakassi Boys, to communities across the state to assist in providing security.
In Ekiti, Fayose was quoted to have made the statement in Ibadan on Tuesday while attending a programme organised by the Nigerian Union of Journalists, Oyo Chapter.
A member of the ethnic group confided in THISDAY in Ado Ekiti that they received Fayose’s statement with shock, saying they had taken a final decision to lodge a formal complaint to the Ewi of Ado Ekiti, Oba Rufus Adeyemo Adejugbe over the dangers inherent in the comment.
He said the members would also meet with the state traditional council, particularly its chairman and Ologotun of Ogotun Ekiti, Oba Oladapo Samuel Oyebade after their encounter with the Ado monarch.
The source, who didn’t want to be quoted because of the sensitivity of the issue and for not being authorised to speak on behalf of the Fulani herdsmen, said the statement credited to the governor could spark up crisis between them and the farmers, even when such is unwarranted.
“What many people don’t know is that there is a difference between Fulani and Bororo. We have been in Ado for long, doing our businesses and I don’t think any of us could resort to killing of our hosts, what for?
“We know that the Obas own the towns and the land, so we want to appeal to them to help us reach out to the governor not to go to that extent. We have been cohabiting peacefully with our hosts and I don’t think such a statement would help in sustaining the existing peace in the land.
“Though, we want to make it abundantly clear that we condemn the wanton killings and maiming of innocent Nigerians by some suspected herdsmen, but we are assuring that such will not happen in Ekiti.
“As much as we are ready to cooperate with government and other stakeholders to make the state peaceful, we should also be mindful of our comments, actions and inactions because that too could ignite unnecessary tension,” he said. ThisDaylive