Residents of Isaba Ekiti in the Ikole Council area of Ekiti State, on Saturday, protested the killing of two farmers by suspected Fulani herdsmen on Friday.
The angry residents, comprising youths, women and the aged chanted war songs, made bonfires and rained curses on the killers of the two farmers just as vehicular and commercial activities were affected for a greater part of Saturday while major roads in the community were blocked by the protesters.
The victims were identified as Toyin Akeju popularly known as Jisoro in the community while the other, simply called Daodu, was said to be a labourer invited to work on the farm. The two victims were mauled on their farmland.
A source in Isaba Ekiti said, “The two victims went to the farm on Friday and they were killed there by Fulani herdsmen who had been terrorising the Ikole, Oke Ako, Irele, Ipao axes. The dead bodies of the two farmers were recovered from the bush on Saturday.”
Another source, who said the family, after waiting for the return of the two men from the farm on Friday, approached men of Amotekun Corps, who in turn initiated a search team alongside the local hunters and the police to the farm where they discovered their corpses with gunshot injuries on Saturday morning.
He said, “Obviously, it was a reprisal attack because on Thursday, these farmers were on the farm and had issues with the herdsmen. The herders went away and returned on Friday to commit this dastardly act against the farmers who only challenged them a day earlier. It is a very sad situation.”
The Commander, Ekiti Amotekun Corps, Brig. General Joe Komolafe (retd), who confirmed the killing, said his men were already on the trail of the criminal elements as he assured that the corps would do everything possible to put an end to attacks by suspected herdsmen.
Komolafe said, “The two farmers were allegedly killed by the herdsmen after an altercation they earlier had on Thursday. We have handed over their corpses to the police while we continue with our investigations.”
The Police Public Relations Officer, Ekiti State Command, Sunday Abutu, said that the police had begun an investigation to unravel the remote and immediate cause of the crisis and to ensure that culprits were brought to book.
Abutu said, “There was a crisis between some farmers and the herders, in the process, there were casualties. The police were contacted and operatives have been deployed to that axis to maintain peace. The corpses of the deceased had been recovered from the Amotekun Corps and deposited in the morgue at Ikole General Hospital.
“The Police Commissioner, Mr Tunde Mobayo, has called for calm. Policemen are on the trail of the suspected killers,” Abutu stated.