By James Ogunnaike
The traditional head of Opeji in Odeda local government area of Ogun State, High Chief Rasaq Adeshina, and other stakeholders in the community, have banned underage and arms bearing herdsmen in the community.
The ban followed a meeting between Opeji indigenes, law enforcement agencies, led by an Assistant Commissioner of Police and leaders of the Fulani in the community.
The meeting was conveyed to address the growing security breaches and alleged influx of strange faces in the community.
At the meeting attended by Chief Adeshina, the Adatan Police Area Commander, ACP Ayo Edun, the Divisional Police Officer of Bode Olude Police Division, Mr Olurotimi Ajakaye and some Fulani leaders, the residents alleged that the underage herders were often responsible for the many evils being perpetrated by herdsmen in the community, declaring that it must stop.
They demanded that the herders fish out the strangers in their midst, wear identification uniform with name tag and stop night grazing in the community and its farmland or vacate Opeji if they would not comply.
The traditional ruler expressed worries over the security challenges posed to his community and its people in the last six months by criminal herders, warning that herders’ life threatening activities and destruction of farm crops would not be condoned anymore.
But the Chairman of Bororo Fulani in Opeji, Alhaji Yahayah Daule, speaking on behalf of others, said there was no need to make them wear uniform, pointing out that this was unlikely to solve the problem of insecurity in the area.
Daule noted that people could wear uniform, but if they were criminally minded, they could put it off before engaging in evil acts, assuring that having lived in Opeji for over 40 years, he would not allow strangers or welcome any criminal to destroy the long established relationship.
He noted that the “evil ones are like a pregnant woman,” leaving nobody with any definite knowledge of what will come out of her womb and the type of person the child eventually becomes in society”.
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