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The Western Nigeria Security Network (WNSN), popularly known as Amotekun, has alleged that two of its operatives were killed by herdsmen in an ambush at Ago Sanusi, along Ute Road, Owo Local Government Area of Ondo state.
The ICIRlearnt that the ambush against the Amotekun men took place in the forest.
A source disclosed that the attack took place at about 2:00 am on Wednesday, with the suspects fully armed with dangerous weapons, including AK 47 riffles.
Adetunji Adeleye, commander of Amotekun Corps in the state, who confirmed the development, said a farmer whose name was given as Lanre, who had earlier been abducted in the area, was also found dead in the forest.
He also stated that a member of the Vigilante Group of Nigeria was equally shot dead.
He said it was the villagers that alerted the Amotekun men of the attacks, adding that the suspects burnt down an Amotekun vehicle parked in the village and scared the villagers away.
Adeleye, however, debunked the news making the rounds that the head of operations of the corps in Owo Local Government, Oluwasesan Adebayo, was missing.
This is coming barely 48 hours after Amotekun claimed it arrested two armed herdsmen and about two hundred cows following the ban on under-aged grazing, night grazing, movement of cattle along highways and open grazing by the state government two weeks ago.
Although the presidency has charged security operatives to arrest any herdsmen found with an unauthorised weapon, criminality attributed to armed herdsmen has become a growing concern in the South-Western part of the country.
Wole Soyinka, Nigerian Nobel laureate, has predicted that if the situation is not urgently and decisively addressed by President Muhammadu Buhari, it could degenerate into a civil war in the country.
On Thursday, the Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF) announced an outlaw of open grazing in all the 36 states of the country.
In a communique issued at the end of its 25th virtual meeting and signed by Forum chairman, Kayode Fayemi, the governors were encouraged “to put in place systems to accelerate the grazing initiative of the National Livestock Transformation Plan and ranching in the country.”
The consensus was reached to address the rising insecurity in the country, which had been linked to armed herdsmen operating as bandits.
Meanwhile, the Forum condemned the ethnic profiling of crime in the country and resolved to “convene an emergency meeting of all Governors” on the matter.
“The Forum respects the right of abode of all Nigerians and strongly condemns criminality and the ethnic profiling of crime in the country in an effort to frame the widespread banditry and the herders- farmers crisis,” the communique said.