It appears farmers in Ogun State are still battling with the destruction of farmlands by herdsmen through indiscriminate open grazing of their cows, Muhabarishaji reports.
Recently, the Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun, signed the anti-open grazing law to prohibit the act of moving cattle around the public places by herders.
The anti-open grazing law, the Governor hoped, would put an end to the farmers/herders clashes, which pitched the Hausa-Fulani settlers against their Yoruba host communities, leading to killings, carnage, arson and relocation of Yewa people from Ogun to neighbouring Benin Republic, in the first quarter of year 2021.
Unfortunately for farmers in Ogun, the ban on open grazing would not be enforced until after six months, leaving investors in the agric sector to the mercy of non-challant herders, who invade their farms to destroy everything they have laboured so much for.
Fatai Ilyas, a journalist with Platform Times, would not forget in a hurry, how his hope to become a millionaire, was thwarted by herders, whose cattle, he claimed, grazed on his vegetation at Awowo farm settlement, near Abeokuta.
Seeking justice over the loss he incured as a result of the invasion, Ilyas petitioned the State Commissioner of Police, Lanre Bankole, asking that the herdsmen be arrested and brought to justice.
According to a copy of the petition made available to Muhabarishaji, the reporter lamented that his six acres vegetable farm was brought down by the herders.
The thirty-three-year old graduate told the Commissioner of Police that he had invested N600,000 in planting the vegetables, expecting a sum of N1m as the return on investment.
While saying he was devastated by the manner in which the animals wiped out the entire plantation, Ilyas said, “On the 1st of October, 2021, I received a call from my partner, Mr. Oluwanifemi Olawale that some suspected Fulani herdsmen had invaded our six (6) acres vegetables farm, situated at Awowo in Ewekoro Local Government Area of Ogun State, which had gulped more than Six Hundred Thousand Naira (N600,000.00) with expected returns of One Million, Eight Hundred Thousand Naira.
“On immediate inspection, I was devastated by the level of destruction caused by the cows under the command of the herders.”
The young man explained that he had earlier lodged a formal complaint at Obada-Oko police station, “without any tangible news of arrest of the culprits, which makes me sadder by the day.”
“I, therefore, demand that an action is taken to track the herdsmen and bring them to justice,” he pleaded.
Muhabarishaji recalls that some herdsmen, in the same Awowo, were accused of setting a solar power station on fire in February.
The Alawowo of Awowo, Oba AbdulGafar Olasukanmi Tijani, confirmed to Muhabarishaji at the time that Fulani herders burnt down the £15,000 worth solar power system, which he had erected in his community.