Thursday, 16 March 2017

Afenifere kicks as police arrest Ife monarch, 14 indigenes

The United Nations, the Federal Government and Cameroon have signed a tripartite agreement on the safe return of over 65,000 Internally Displaced Persons currently in Cameroon.
This was disclosed in Calabar, Cross River State on Wednesday by the Federal Commissioner, National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons, Hajiya Sadiya Umaru-Farouq, during the commencement of distribution food and other items to the Bakassi IDPs.

Umaru-Farouq said the agreement was signed to ensure the protection and assistance of Nigerians in Cameroon as they return voluntarily to Nigeria.
According to her, the 65,000 IDPs consist of the Boko Haram victims and the displaced people of Bakassi.
She said, “We have about 65,000 Nigerians in Cameroon. The number consists of Boko Haram victims and displaced people of Bakassi. This agreement is voluntary for those willing to return to Nigeria and for those who wish to stay in Cameroon.
“We will profile them and see the number that wants to return home and those that want to remain in Cameroon.”
The Federal Commissioner distributed bags of rice, wheelbarrows, cartons of noodles, gallons of groundnut oil and palm oil, among others to the IDPs.
The Director-General, Cross River State Emergency Management Agency, Mr. John Inaku, said the incidence of IDPs in the state started when the oil-rich Bakassi peninsula was ceded to Cameroon in 2008.
Inaku said the Bakassi camp had over 3,720 IDPs, adding that the people suffered untold hardship because they no longer engaged in fish farming.
Speaking for the displaced Bakassi refugees, a former presidential adviser, Senator Florence Ita-Giwa noted that it was the first time that the Federal Government responded positively to the plight of the people.
Ita-Giwa said, “For four years that these people had been displaced, it was the paramount ruler of Bakassi and I that made arrangement for the temporary accommodation. From that time on, we had cried for help, the children are no longer in school. There are other Bakassi people in Day Spring that are living in deplorable conditions.
“This is about the first time that we have a governor that is on the same page with the people of Bakassi. We commend President Muhammadu Buhari for listening to the yearnings of the Bakassi people and other displaced Nigerians. It is imperative that he comes to see the people to further understand their plight.”
Earlier during a courtesy visit, Governor Ben Ayade, said the IDPs had totally been dislocated from their ancestral homes.
Ayade said the IDPs had been reduced to what he called `elements’, saying that some of them were greatly affected by the displacement.
“The Bakassi IDPs can no longer afford their adequate feeding per day; they can no longer fish or farm to earn a living. They have been taken away from their source of livThe apex Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, on Wednesday, condemned what it described as ‘indiscriminate arrest of Ile-Ife citizens’ by the police, following the fracas that involved Yoruba and Hausa residents a few days ago in Ife.
The body, which claimed that a monarch, the Alapoje of Alapoje community in Ife, Oba Ademola Ademiluyi, was arrested along with 14 other indigenes, said it was wrong of the police to embark on indiscriminate arrest of Yoruba residents.
Vowing to resist further indiscriminate arrests by the police, the group said some of the arrested residents were transferred to the Osun State Police Command headquarters in Osogbo, while other were transferred to the Force Headquarters in Abuja.
A statement by the Afenifere, entitled: “Ife Crisis: The Hounding after and Yoruba’s Stand”, urged the Federal Government to call all the stakeholders in the crisis to a meeting and find an amicable solution to it.
Recalling that the crisis started when a Hausa resident assaulted a Yoruba woman, the Afenifere said an undergraduate with the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Yekini Saka; Francis Eludoyin, Oshowade Lukman, Sikiru Jimoh, Isaac Omisanmi, and Adigun Osuolale, were arrested, among others.
It said, “Leading citizens of Yoruba nation are grieved by the recent disturbance in Ile-Ife, the cradle of Yoruba civilisation. We are concerned that lives were lost on our land as it is not in our character to open our land for bloodletting. The whole world acknowledges that we welcome foreigners and go the extra mile to make them happy. And this explains why our space is hospitable and allows strangers to prosper and feel at home.
“In Ife, in particular, the Arewa community has a record of over 80 years’ stay in the ancient city and has never come under attack not even when there were serious disturbances between the local communities. The Sabo area was a safe place to be in those disturbing days. This is why it is very important to interrogate the cause of the recent disturbance. Our way of life is being violently violated with sheer impunity. We shall not take it anymore.”
Afenifere also commended the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, for physically going to the scene to quell the conflict.
Meanwhile, the Acting Governor of Kaduna State, Barnabas Yusuf-Bala, on Wednesday, met with security chiefs, Yoruba, Igbo and Igala leaders in Kaduna so as to avert a reprisal.
The meeting was sequel to the clash between Yoruba and Hausa residents in Ile-Ife.
The Kaduna State Police Commissioner, Agyole Abbeh; Garrison Commander, One Mechanised Division, Nigerian Army, Kaduna, Brig.-Gen. Samaila Isah, and other top government functionaries attended the meeting along with the leaders of Yoruba, Igala and Igbo communities in Kaduna.
Yusuf-Bala said, “Those trying to incite unnecessary tensions in the state because of what happened in Ile-Ife, Osun State, should desist from circulating videos and images with inciting commentary and calls on citizens for reprisals.”
In another development, the senator representing Osun-East senatorial district, Babajide Omoworare, has donated bags of rice, beans and cows to the Hausa community in Ife.
Omoworare also donated bags of rice and beans to the Ife Central Working Committee for the Yoruba victims of the clash.
The lawmaker, who visited the scene of the incident, pleaded with residents of the town to live in peace.
Speaking at the Oba Sijuwade Memorial Hall, Ile-Ife, Omoworare attributed the clash to the non-availability of mechanisms to detect conflicts at early stages.
“Federal Commissioner, please I appeal to you to present our case to Mr. President whom I trust so much and believe would permanently resettle our brothers and sisters who have lost touch with the true meaning of life,” he said.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Get more stories like this on our twitter @Abdul_Ent and facebook page @abdulkukublogspot