The President-General of Agbekoya Farmers Association, Chief Kamorudeen Okikiola, has said that herdsmen have attacked and killed no fewer than 4000 farmers in various towns and communities of the South-West since 2015.
The farmers’ association chief added that herdsmen could perpetrate crime in the South-West because of the backing from godfathers, who purchase arms and ammunition.
Okikiola, in an interview with Vanguard, noted that President Muhammadu Buhari’s government had also failed to “arrest the godfathers who are financially responsible for the purchase of ammunition and weapons for herdsmen.”
He said, “Some factors, events and incidents informed my remarks, especially the spate of kidnappings and killings of farmers and innocent Yoruba sons and daughters by Fulani criminal herdsmen and bandits.
“Over 4,000 farmers and innocent citizens have been killed in the South-West since 2015, without any arrest and prosecution. Kidnapping and killings of people by criminal Fulani herdsmen continue unabated without any positive and responsive steps taken by the President Muhammadu Buhari administration to curb the armed criminal Fulani’s nefarious activities herdsmen.
“Another factor that informed my remarks is the influx of Fulani criminal herdsmen and the amount of ammunition and weapons, like AK47, being smuggled by these criminals into the South-West.
“I am amazed that not much has been done to arrest the godfathers who are financially responsible for the purchase of ammunition and weapons because I am sure that the Fulani criminal herdsmen are not the ones financing the purchase of these weapons.
“Gradually and subtly, the history of Fulani’s expansionist tendencies towards the South-West is being reenacted and Agbekoya and other Yoruba nation stakeholders are aware of these tendencies. These expansionist tendencies will be seriously rebuffed with everything it takes to stop these senseless kidnappings and killings.
“In most of the villages and towns in Yoruba land, our farmers have deserted their farms and people cannot move about freely to conduct their business activities because of the fear of being kidnapped and killed.”