© 2018 - International Centre for Investigative Reporting
Five Dead In Ife Ethnic Clash
Properties worth millions of Naira were destroyed
About five persons are reported to have died in an ethnic clash in Ile-Ife, Osun State on Wednesday. Several Others were wounded.
Also properties worth millions of naira were torched in the violence between Yorubas and Hausas in Sabo area of the town which is occupied by mainly Hausa dwellers.
The crisis was said to have started on Tuesday in Sabo, and was still raging as at Wednesday afternoon
Some Youths were seen on Wednesday morning wielding assorted weapons and heading towards the Sabo area.
Soldiers and police officers were also seen trying to restore calm but some residents accused the security officials of taking sides with a particular group in the crisis, a development that further fueled the violence.
Many Shops were razed while parents rushed to pick their children from their schools with some of the children taken to the palace of the Ooni of Ife, Enitan Ogunwusi.
Following the incident, a dusk to dawn curfew was declared by the Osun State Government.
Director of Communication and Strategy in the office of the governor, Semiu Okanlawon, in a statement said that the curfew will last until Friday between 6 p.m. and 7 a.m. daily.
Some residents of the area said that the clash was caused by an auto accident involving a Yoruba driver who hit the wife of an Hausa man, prompting the other Hausa residents to attack the man and beat him up.
Though the situation was temporarily brought under control, members of the National Union of Road Transport Workers, NURTW, refused to let things be and embarked on a reprisal attack which led to the escalation of the crisis.
The angry mob attempted to gain entrance into the Sabo community but were denied by the police, so they attacked the Lagere community instead lashing out on some Hausa traders in the community.
In the statement announcing the curfew, Okalanwon said: “This is to assure all and sundry that the breach of the peace in Ile Ife is not beyond the control of our highly mobilised security forces.
“To this end, the Governor of the State of Osun, upon receiving reports of the fracas the exact cause of which is still under investigation, has ordered deployment of adequate security forces and is getting minute-by-minute situation reports.
“The Government therefore warns those involved in this act of criminal breach of public peace to end it immediately as the full weight of the law would be brought to bear on anyone arrested.”