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The Lightning That Killed Cows

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ElevateNews takes a look at the circumstances that led to the death of cows by lightning in two Southwest States.

About 63 cows have been killed by lightning in the last few months and this happened in Southwest Nigeria. When thunder struck on Saturday night, in Ijare Community of Ifedore Local Government Area of Ondo State, 36 cows died instantly.

Two weeks after, the lightning killed another 8 cows in Ikare, Akoko North-East Local Government Area of Ondo State. Both were attributed to a natural disaster but some of the Yoruba indigenes of the area said that the herders and their cows had suffered the loss because they had trespassed a sacred land.

It was gathered that the herders grazed their cows at “Oke Owa”, a sacred land, where only the traditional king can enter.

Another 19 cows died at Iba community, in Osun State at the weekend, taking the number of the animals killed by lightning to 63. The leader of Mayetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria, described the incident as natural disaster as he debunked the rumour of any fetish agenda by the Yoruba land owners.

Lightning occurs in the raining season, according to elementary science but when it happens during the dry season, it can be questioned. A thunderstorm in Yorubaland during the dry season is not likely to be a natural disaster but the wrath of the god of the thunder, who is known as “Sango”.

The Yorubas can invite the deity of thunder to intercede whenever they have lacked the powers of their own to fight a war. And this comes through a lot of propitiations and sacrifices.

Undoubtedly, the crisis of herdsmen and their cattle in Nigeria has gone beyond the physical because the Federal Government has done little to curb the killings between the farmers and the herders.

Till date, investigation reveals that cattle have not stopped destroying crops, yet justice is not done. Most farmers who report to the police about their damaged crops hardly get justice.

If the lightning is a natural disaster, how come, none of the herders died in the three incidents but their cows? Does it mean that the lightning was naturally targeted at the cows but not their owners?

To me, the lightning goes beyond natural disaster but a manmade occurrence through the invocation of “Sango” the god of thunder himself.

I want to believe that there are goats and sheep in those communities where lightning had occurred, how many of the goats died?

Perhaps the lightning may douse the tension in the Southwest now that the death of any cow cannot be traced to any person but a natural disaster.

It has happened in two States, Ondo and Osun, may it not continue so that the story will not change. If it goes beyond these two States, the police may have to investigate why “Sango” is angry now. There are those who worship Sango that may need to appease the god of the thunder to stop the storm so that the cows may live.

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