OUTRAGE greeted the invasion and razing of the farm belonging to former Secretary to the Government of Nigeria, SGF, Chief Olu Falae, yesterday, at Igbatoro in Akure North council of Ondo State.
Four workers, who reside on the farm, were attacked and their personal belongings carted away before the farm was razed.
Vanguard gathered that the marauding herdsmen, numbering about 10, with over a thousand cows, invaded the farm around 11pm on Sunday and set it ablaze.
Falae’s Personal Assistant, Captain Moshood Raji (retd), who confirmed the invasion and destruction, said the herdsmen “have been coming to destroy the maize and cassava farm at will.”
Raji said: “Last week, they went to the Citrus Farm, but the Police engaged them. They came back last night (Sunday) to attack the innocent staff.”
Falae writes Amotekun
But the former SGF has written a ‘Save our Soul’ letter to the Amotekun security outfit in the state.
Falae, in the letter dated Monday, November 23 and addressed to the commandant of the security outfit, Adetunji Adeleye, urged the outfit not to allow a repeat of the ugly incident that occurred in 2015 when marauding herdsmen kidnapped him on his farm.
Falae said: “In the last few weeks, Fulani herdsmen came into my maize farm twice to eat up and trample large sessions of the farm.
“I reported the incidents to Chairman of the Miyetti Allah in Ondo State, Alhaji Bello, and nothing was done.
“In the last few days, they have gone to attack my citrus farm by stealing harvested oranges and destroying what they could not carry away.
“The police on security duty on the farm were sent to drive them away.
“But they have been coming back every night to attack my workers in our camp, breaking their door and carting away all their belongings.
“Please, let Amotekun save us and our livelihood. They kidnapped me on September 21, 2015; they should not be allowed to do it again. Thank you for rendering our race this patriotic duty.”
We’re not aware of attack —Police
When contacted, spokesperson of the Ondo Police Command, Mr. Tee Leo-Ikoro said that the command was not aware of the attack and destruction of the politician farm.
They can’t continue this madness—Afenifere
Meanwhile, expressing anger over the attack on Falae’s farm, the pan-Yoruba socio-political organization, Afenifere, said marauding herdsmen have become a special menace but warned that their atrocities will no longer be tolerated.
Afenifere’s National Publicity Secretary, Yinka Odumakin said: “The herdsmen have become a special menace as part of the ‘our power’ season of anomie terrorizing Nigeria.
“They can’t continue this madness and think it would be on forever. How long do their enablers think they can sustain this absurdity? Has anybody from here gone to their base to make life unbearable for them? Not in any way. Those who run Nigeria now owe a duty to hold the leech on their mad dogs running wild like beasts over the South-West and other non-Fulani communities.”
Blame S-West govs —YCE
Similarly, the Yoruba Council of Elders, YCE, frowned at the attack.
Secretary-General of the YCE, Dr. Kunle Olajide said such attacks will no longer be tolerated adding that Yoruba people will hold the state governors responsible for the lapses.
Olajide said: “This is a very big surprise to me. We should hold our state governments accountable for the lapses in the protection of our borders.
“Over a year ago, the Amotekun security outfit was launched; we are yet to see their effectiveness. With the security votes they collect on a monthly basis, they should be able to secure our borders.
“We sincerely sympathise with our elder statesman who has suffered serial damages and the sweat of his labour destroyed.”
“Protection of lives and property should be the first thing that our governors, who are the chief security officers of their states, should provide.”
Timeline of attacks on Falae’s farm
The first encounter that Falae had with the marauding herdsmen was on September 21, 2015, during his 77th birthday. He was kidnapped and spent four days in captivity.
His abductors, numbering 20, invaded his farm in Ilado village, Akure North area of Ondo state and kidnapped him.
Many of his workers, including the farm manager identified as Bruno, were matcheted, while others were wounded during the attack.
Also, barely two weeks after his release in 2015, marauding herdsmen attacked and destroyed over one-kilometer plantation of maize during the invasion.
Similarly, in 2016, 10 herdsmen invaded the farm and killed one of his security guards.
In 2017, the herdsmen invaded the farm and destroyed some crops worth millions of naira.
In 2018, the rampaging herdsmen, numbering 10, again invaded the farm and set ablaze 10 hectares of oil plantation, cassava and yam farm.