‘How can marauders be killing us?’ Ogbomoso youth group fumes, to stage protest

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‘How can marauders be killing us?’ Ogbomoso youth group fumes, to stage protest

Yinka ADETUNJI

Worried by the increasing spate of insecurity in the country, Ogbomoso Community Youth Forum (OCYF) has informed it would soon stage a protest tagged, “Awareness against insecurity.”

The leading youth group, unveils this plan today in a proclamation titled, “Worsening security situation: Ogbomoso having its cruel share and the need to fight collectively,” signed by its president and secretary, Rev’d Peter Olaleye and Comrade Adeniji Idowu respectively and made available to ogbomosoinsightonline.com.

The release expresses deep concern noting that the menace, which started in the north eastern part of the country, because it was not decisively checked, spread to the north west, to the north central and is now threatening the south especially southwest.

Though admitting the unconventional method the attacks encompassing guerrilla warfare makes it difficult for security agencies to combat, the influential group posits that it had come to a point where the citizens could no longer keep silent.

OCYF, which successfully championed many noble causes in Ogbomoso in recent times, stresses it was embarking on the protest to further ginger government to live up to its duty of protecting lives and properties as well as charging communities to buckle up by way of reinforcing community security networks.

“The collapsing security in the country has become a hydra-headed monster that sane people can no longer tolerate. It is regrettable that the guerilla pattern of attack adopted by the aggressors, mostly bandits, herdsmen and terrorists, which is highly unconventional, has made it difficult, we realize, for the conventional security agencies especially the Nigerian Police, NSDSC and others to tackle.

“From the north eastern part of the country, the monstrous onslaughts spread to the north west, to the north central and now the southern part is at the threshold of the vicious attacks in view of the increasing spate of attacks composed of abductions for ransom, unmitigated killings, widespread farm destructions, raping, pillaging, plundering and so on,” the release states.

Alleging the criminals are on terrorism spree for reasons of subjugation, subversion and domination of the natives consequently seizing their ancestral lands illegally, the group wonders why a permanent feature of the activities of the terrorists is evasion of arrest.

“Atrociously, the whole of the south is quaking from the enveloping orgy of violence perpetrated by these mean terrorists. Many are the reasons adduced for their dastardly acts including unwholesome land seizures from indigenous people, subjugation, domination and creation of fiefdoms controlled by them. There is also the insinuation that ransom money they collected without let or hindrance constitutes funds the criminals channel into amassing weapons of mass destructions for the imminent catastrophe they already planned.

“The propensity of these criminals to always evading apprehension by government’s security agencies and more worrisomely the skirting of justice for the few apprehended by local security agencies, calls for great concern and greater tending towards the belief that some powerful Nigerians are complicit and are the ones compromising security agencies.”

It laments the darkness of terrorism is enveloping Ogbomoso as well revealing many areas in the zone are already feeling the heat, which it says informed its decision to embark on the awareness drive on insecurity.

It warns that if government continues to act askance and refuses to rein in the marauders people would be forced to take up arms to defend themselves.

However, the group says it has not chosen a date for the awareness campaign informing however it would be soon and be communicated to the peace-loving people of the community.

Read the statement in full below:

WORSENING SECURITY SITUATION: OGBOMOSO HAVING ITS CRUEL SHARE AND THE NEED TO FIGHT COLLECTIVELY 

The collapsing security in the country has become a hydra-headed monster that sane people can no longer tolerate. It is regrettable that the guerilla pattern of attack adopted by the aggressors, mostly bandits, herdsmen and terrorists, which is highly unconventional, has made it difficult, we realize, for the conventional security agencies especially the Nigerian Police, NSDSC and others to tackle. From the North Eastern part of the country, the monstrous onslaughts spread to the North West, to the North Central and now the Southern part is at the threshold of the vicious attacks in view of the increasing spate of attacks composed of abductions for ransom, unmitigated killings, widespread farm destructions, raping, pillaging, plundering and so on. Atrociously, the whole of the South is quaking from the enveloping orgy of violence perpetrated by these mean terrorists. Many are the reasons adduced for their dastardly acts including unwholesome land seizures from indigenous people, subjugation, domination and creation of fiefdoms controlled by them. There is also the insinuation that ransom money they collected without let or hindrance constitutes funds the criminals channel into amassing weapons of mass destructions for the imminent catastrophe they already planned. The propensity of these criminals to always evading apprehension by government’s security agencies and more worrisomely the skirting of justice for the few apprehended by local security agencies, calls for great concern and greater tending towards the belief that some powerful Nigerians are complicit and are the ones compromising security agencies.

Ogbomoso in the throe of herders’ attacks   

No community in the South West is now immune to the heists committed by these marauders who continue to get bolder and tyrannical by the day. The kidnap of a reverend gentleman, his wife and driver while travelling through Ogbomoso-Oyo road few weeks ago, signposts our collective vulnerability to danger. The Owo massacre too, is an evident of the encompassing threat. The Igangan attack of June last year is another brutality orchestrated by these terror gangs. Ogbomoso, a hitherto peaceful community and accommodating to visitors like most Yoruba communities, is increasingly getting its peaceful environment ruptured by the horrible activities of these criminals especially herdsmen, who maim, destroy farms, rape and kill. Farmers and people generally cannot venture out into their farms again due to fear of falling victims to these ruthless bandits. To say our defence is being breached is to say the obvious. Our enemies now appear to mean business while we continue to be frivolous and take the matter with levity. Herdsmen’ brutalities have now become the order of the day in areas like Federal Housing Estate, Aroje, Ogbegun, Igbo’le, LAUTECH extension, Iya-Oje, Ikoyi and Oriire local government area in general. Our people can’t take laws into their hands as law-abiding citizens but the limitation imposed on government’s security agents is worrisome. The Amotekun corps, an initiative of South West states to improve the security architecture is also impeded by its operatives’ inability to bear arms. Where therefore do we go from here?

However, we want to still appeal to the Oyo State Government to intensify efforts on securing lives and properties of the people especially in Ogbomoso and its environs, the zone being the border of Southern and Northern Nigeria. We don’t want our people to be forced into a corner that could trigger their activating self-help mechanisms. Enough is enough! An end must be put to this unseemly barbarism! While people in other lands are celebrating breakthroughs in science and technology, business and commerce, medicine and engineering, art and so on, here, we are locked in battles of survival while the Federal Government that is invested with the constitutional right (no thanks to our awkward federalism) has failed in its duty. But we aren’t cowards, our forefathers stopped these marauders in the nineteenth century, we will do so again, we are invincible. But we don’t pray to be forced to taking up arms ourselves. That is why we are calling on governments and security agencies to step up their game in combating this unabated menace.

Our resolve on peaceful protest as a starter 

They seem to have succeeded in keeping people away from their farms; they are now turning to keeping us from worship centres, typified by the brutal attack on the Owo church. This, our people are ready to resist with their last ounce of blood. As a token of our resolve not to fold our arms in the face of this unabated provocation, we have decided to hold a peaceful rally in Ogbomoso to make our grievances known to governments. We won’t wait till we have the Benue episode re-enacted in our land. That will be gruesome; we won’t wait until the matter degenerates to that absurd level, where IDP camps are created within the people’s ancestral enclaves, following their mindless and ruthless driving away.

We should see the event as a measure towards revitalizing the security situation in the country especially in our area. It will call attention to the precarious situation we are enmeshed in so that governments at different levels can get to know the severity of the situation so they could gear efforts and spike commitment to protecting lives and properties. How can a band of marauders, armed robbers, kidnappers, killers, rapists and terrorists continue to have a field day in our midst with governments only paying lip service? We encourage all to attend the (in) security rally, adequate protection will be provided by security agencies.

Let’s collectively fight for a better environment.

 

 

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