Farmers’ clash in Akaeze, Ivo local government area of Ebonyi State on Tuesday with herdsmen has left four persons from both sides seriously injured.
While three herdsmen where left with serious head injuries one of the farmers received machete cuts on various parts of his body.
The farmer who sustained serious machete cuts wounds, is receiving treatment at the Emergency Ward of Federal Teaching Hospital Abakaliki (FETHA) while the injured herdsmen are receiving treatment at a hospital in Awgu, Enugu state.
Reports say the residents of the community have fled for fear of attack.
It was gathered that herdsmen from Mpu, Enugu state invaded farmlands in Akaeze and destroyed farm crops which angered one of the farmers that was butchered who confronted them, leading to his machete attack by the rampaging herdsmen.
The farmer who has machete cuts allover his body, is reported to be unconscious in the hospital.
The incident forced the State Governor David Umahi to ban grazing in the entire Ivo local government area until investigation into the matter is concluded.
Umahi who summoned emergency security meeting with security chiefs in the state, Leaders of Herdsmen, local government Chairmen and
stakeholders of Ivo local government, set up 10-man committee to investigate the attacks.
“This issue is becoming complicated because if we had seen cow, we will now believe that he attacked cows and they butchered him. I want the CP, the Army and the SSS to set up committee.
It should be 10- man committee to investigate the matter and we will convey another emergency security meeting on the matter.
“The investigation should commence immediately. But I am banning any Herdsman from entering Ivo local government until this investigation is completed and I want the security men to carry out my instruction. No Herdsman should enter the place, no cattle should enter Ivo local government again until investigation is completed”.
‘I want you people to note it down that any herdsman that is coming into Ebonyi must follow the procedure and must not carry animals late into Ebonyi. You bring in animals by vehicles, knowing there is no cattle routes, there is no grazing reserve in Ebonyi, there is no colony Ebonyi.
“So, no animal should come to Ebonyi by routes, it is by vehicle and before they are coming, the Ardo they are coming from should do a letter that they are coming in here. You cannot come into somebody’s farm without his permission, you can’t do that.
“My prayer is that the victims will all be alive. At the end of the day when the report is completed, whoever is the first aggressor will go to prison, I will send the person to prison no matter whom the person is.
“I am banning any form of entering anybody’s farm in Ebonyi state, anybody that does it will be arrested. Any cattle that goes into farmland should be arrested immediately. I have said it severally that
there is no cattle routes in Ebonyi, there is no grazing routes and there is no colony.
“Anybody that kills the cows of a Fulani man, should go to prison for one year and also pay for the cattle. Any Fulani man that destroys the farm of a farmer, will go to prison for one year and pay for the cost of the farmland”, Umahi stated.
Meanwhile Governor Umahi has assented to the bill passed by the State House of Assembly creating two additional autonomous communities in the the war torn Ezza/Ezilo community.
Umahi while assenting to the bill expressed happiness with the speedy passage of the bill by the State House of Assembly, describing the law
as the permanent solution to the age long communal crisis that led to destruction of lives and property.
Governor Umahi after brokering peace in the community on assumption of office created two additional communities from the Ezilo community which now has the Izo autonomous community for the Ezza clan and Ameze community for the Ezilo people.
He commended the State legislature led by the Speaker, Francis Nwifuru for their commitment and role in sustenance of peace in every part of the state and described them as worthy partners in development and enthronement of lasting peace. Ends