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Herdsmen: Strangers In Our Forests, Ooni Tells Buhari

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Nigeria News takes a look at the visit of Ooni of Ife to President Muhammadu on herdsmen issue.

As much as the noise about herdsmen invasion into Southwest may look as propaganda by the opposition of the present administration, it is apparent that the country is under serious security threat.

The fact remains that Nigerians are being abducted on a daily basis while many are being killed by the insurgents and bandits that are now ravaging the country.

With the killings of Nigerian troops, including an army colonel, it appears that President Muhammadu Buhari is not winning the war against terrorism in the Northwestern part of this country.

Meetings of leaders and elders in the Southwest are secretly going on how to combat the new threat of kidnapping and killing in the region. This criminality is more attributed to the invasion of herdsmen into the Southwest forests.

But to some political elites, the criminals are not herdsmen but bandits who disguise as herders to perpetrate evil. Either way, the rate of insecurity has reached its alarming rate in the Southwestern part of Nigeria to the extent that the Ooni of Ife, the Imperial Majesty, Oba Adeyeye Enitan had to visit President Muhammadu Buhari to explain the security situation of the Yoruba nation.

Earlier last week, former President Olusegun Obasanjo wrote an open letter to Buhari, stressing the need to proffer adequate security in the country, his letter was rebuffed by the presidency.

Obasanjo wrote, shortly after his return from the residence of Pa Reuben Fasorati, the Afenifere leader whose daughter Funke Olakunrin was murdered by men in the hoods along Ore Road.

Obviously, Yorubas are angry over the death of their leader’s daughter but they have kept quiet, except on the pages of newspapers.

The sluggishness of a lion is not a sign of cowardice. Unlike other ethnic groups, Yorubas hardly beat the drums of war, they will fish out the criminals and take them out secretly if the government fails to act.

The Northern Elders Forum must have sensed the plans by the Yorubas when they called on the herdsmen to leave the South and return home. But this call was quickly discouraged by President Buhari.

He told the herdsmen to continue doing their business peacefully in any part of the country, including the Southwest.

To douse the tension, Ooni of Ife was at the presidential villa Abuja where he told Mr. President that the Yoruba did not want war but that there are strangers in the Southwest forests that are now disguising as herdsmen to perpetrate crimes.

He urged the Federal Government to work with traditional rulers, community leaders to fish out the criminals so that the silent war drums would not be beating louder.

“Our youths should be engaged in better and productive activities instead of war,” the foremost Yoruba monarch said.

Corroborating the Oonirisha, the Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yoruba Land, Iba Gani Adams reiterated the commitment of the Oodua Peoples Congress, OPC to the peaceful co-existence of the Yoruba nation with any other tribes but demanded that government should stop the ongoing criminality in the region as soon as possible.

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