How soldiers aided Fulani herdsmen to terrorise us – Ogun monarchs petition Nigerian Army

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Some traditional rulers in Ogun State have accused soldiers of conniving with Fulani herdsmen to terrorise their subjects.

This was contained in a petition forwarded to the Brigade Commander, 35 Artillery Brigade, Nigerian Army, Alamala, Abeokuta.

Three traditional rulers from Ketu communities of Yewa North Local Government Area of the state signed the petition titled, ‘Matter of Urgency’ and dated January 7, 2020.

They are Oniggua of Iggualand, Oba Micheal Dosumu; Eselu of Iseluland, Oba Akintunde Akinyemi; and Alademeso of Igan Alade, Oba Gabriel Olalowo.

The royal fathers alleged that the herdsmen invaded their land backed by soldiers and any resident that dared to speak up was brutalised by the Army personnel.

In a particular community, the petition read, “The Baale was asked to gather his subjects and people from nearby villages which he did. The suspected soldiers told the people that the purpose of their visit was to inform them that the Fulani herders would be coming into their communities to graze cows.

“After their address, they asked if anyone had question or comment to make in reaction to the information. Expectedly, one Mr Seye Mulero responded by calling the attention of the soldiers to the inherent challenges of allowing the herders in their communities based on the sad previous experiences in the community.

“That the said Seye Mulero further cited past killings, maiming and destruction of farms to buttress his point. Sadly, at this point, the soldiers seized him and mercilessly beat him up.

“In the same manner, the Fulani herders in company of the suspected soldiers left Ibeku for Asa, the adjoining village to address the Baale of Asa and his subjects as they had earlier done at Ibeku, the people refused to respond, having heard what transpired at Ibeku.

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“However, one of the Fulani herders sighted some of people in the audience and picked on them as those that purportedly shouted on them at Ibeku while brutalising their victim (Seye Mulero). The herders asked the soldiers to also deal with them.”

According to the petition, the state Commissioner of Police, Edward Ajogun, on January 3 brokered a meeting over the matter at the Police Divisional Headquarters, Eggua.

The traditional rulers further explained that the police commissioner during the meeting showed his strong displeasure when some of the herders confirmed that they brought the Army personnel that accompanied them as they grazed their cattle.

The traditional rulers said they were appealing to the military authorities to identify, investigate and discipline the soldiers being used by the herdsmen to terrorise residents.

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