Farmers in Idege, located in Ado Ekiti, the capital of Ekiti State, are facing a crisis as their farmlands, mainly cultivating cassava and yam, have been extensively damaged by suspected herders.

Ekiti Farmers Curse Herders for 30+ Farmlands Damage
Ekiti Farmers Curse Herders for 30+ Farmlands Damage

The situation has caused distress among the local farming community, highlighting the ongoing challenges faced by farmers in dealing with the activities of herders and their cattle.

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According to the farmers, the destruction has been caused by cattle belonging to Fulani nomads, which are allowed to roam freely. The cattle have rampaged across multiple hectares of land, leading to significant losses for the farmers. The destruction has affected more than 30 farmers in the area, impacting their economic livelihood and self-sustainability.

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Ibrahim, one of the affected farmers, expressed his concerns, stating that the herders and their cattle have been a constant menace for two years. He reported that the herders instigate attacks on people working in their farmlands, causing substantial damage to crops. Ibrahim recounted a particularly distressing incident from a few months ago when he, along with his two brothers and his son, faced severe harm during a confrontation with some herders. The herders are reported to routinely beat farmers and destroy their farms, often over allegations of cows being killed in the vicinity.

The recent wave of destruction has been described as massive, with over 4,000 heaps of cassava destroyed on Ibrahim’s farm alone, in addition to the havoc on his brother-in-law’s farm. The herders not only consumed the cassava leaves and stems but also uprooted the tubers to feed their animals. This has resulted in a significant economic setback for the affected farmers, as cassava is a crucial crop in the region.

Ibrahim emphasized the economic importance of farming for the local community and highlighted the role farmers play in contributing to food security in Ekiti. He called for urgent government intervention to address the escalating situation and protect farmers from unwarranted destruction on their farms.

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Jamiu, another affected farmer, appealed to Governor Biodun Oyebanji, the Commissioner of Police for Ekiti Command, Mr. Dare Ogundare, and the Commandant of the State Amotekun Corps, Brig. Gen. Olu Adewa, to intervene and safeguard farmers from further attacks.

The farmers have reported their plight to the police and the Amotekun corps multiple times, but the situation persists, raising concerns about the effectiveness of current security measures in dealing with the herders. The farmers are seeking immediate action to prevent further damage to their farms and protect their means of livelihood.

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