The people of Igangan, in Ibarapa, Oyo State, have vowed not to allow the Seriki Fulani back in the town.
The head of the Fulani community in the area, Abdulkadri Saliu, moved back to his Kwara State origin after a crisis broke out, occasioned by allegations of Fulani herdsmen attacks on Igangan people.
Yoruba activist, Sunday Igboho, led the protest, giving the Fulani a week’s ultimatum to vacate the town.
While the Seriki has expressed the hope to return, other things being equal, Convener, Igangan Development Associates, Oladiran Oladokun, said the people would be prepared to lay down their lives to stop his return.
‘The Punch’ quotes him as saying:
“The entire town would rather go into self-suicide than to accept Seriki back. We would rather lay down our lives than for us and our generations to come to be subjected to the evil reign of Seriki again.
“We are now relieved. People can’t go to farm for so many months but people are now thinking of going back to their farms and they are now having hope of a better life and you want to take that hope from them? Our people won’t allow that.
“In the media, people perceive what happened in Igangan as an exaggeration. But for about 20 years, Igangan lived under the oppressive blood carnage championed by the Seriki himself. How do I know? Why is it that on every occasion, no Fulani has been prosecuted?
“If the Seriki is really who he claims to be and he cares so much about the town, why did he not bring out at least one culprit and say, ‘Igangan people, this one that you claimed killed a farmer last week, this is him, we got him for you. We don’t want criminals amongst us, we don’t people to tarnish our image.’ Why hasn’t the Seriki done that over the years?
“Seriki claimed he had no control over Igangan but it is a lie; he held control over the town and the killings, he held sway over Igangan, even the Asigangan of Igangan land and the chiefs were helpless and they bowed to him. That is why they (herders) committed a crime, they would go to him (Seriki) and he would ask them to relax even if they killed or raped a woman in the farm. He would tell them it was the Ja’mah (congregation) that did it.”