NIGERIA’s inspector-general of police Mohammed Adamu has despatched four units of mobile police and one surveillance helicopter to Oyo State in response to the recent violence that resulted in the Sasha market being burnt down
Over the last few weeks, tension has been high across the southwest geo-political zone after herdsmen killed diasporan farmer Dr Fatai Aborode in Ibarapa North Local Government Area of Oyo State. His death lead to Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Igboho issuing a seven day quit notice to the herdsmen to leave the area, after which they were forcefully evicted.
Following the success of the Ibarapa eviction, numerous communities across the southwest have solicited the help of Mr Adeyemo in removing the herdsmen within their midst. Fulani herdsmen are renown for carrying out very violent crimes across Nigeria, including kidnapping, armed robbery, rape and banditry.
Last weekend, things escalated after northerners were attacked at Sasha market in Akinyele Local Government Area of Oyo State. This attack on Fulani’s working in the market led to a loss of lives and the destruction of property.
In response to the violence, Mr Adamu has despatched intervention and stabilisation forces to Oyo State that includes Force Intelligence Bureau operatives and one surveillance helicopter from the Police Air Wing department. Nigeria Police Force spokesman Frank Mba, said the operatives would reclaim the public space, reinforce security and bolster public confidence in the areas affected by the crisis.
Mr Mba said: “The deployments, consisting largely of intelligence and operational assets of the force, include four units of the Police Mobile Force, seasoned operatives from the Force Intelligence Bureau and one operational/surveillance police helicopter from the police Air-wing department. The intervention force is being coordinated by deputy inspector general of police, David Folawiyo, who is expected to mobilise all relevant stakeholders towards achieving the mandate of the squad.”
He added that the force was committed to the safety of the lives and properties of the citizens in the country and called on residents of Oyo State and other Nigerians to embrace peace and cooperate with the police and the security community. It is believed that about 3,000 people have been displaced as a result of the violence in Akinyele Local Government Area.
As normality returns to the area, some people were being escorted out of the trouble spots by security agents to the Moniya area of Ibadan, while some have relocated to the Mokola area of the city. Already, some trucks loaded with tubers of yams were seen coming from the Shasha market but some truck drivers who were afraid of being caught up in the crisis sold their tomatoes at give away prices before getting to the market and headed back to Ilorin-Ogbomosho road.