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‘Indigenes are being displaced in Ogun communities’— group asks FG to help

‘Indigenes are being displaced in Ogun communities’— group asks FG to help
March 08
13:36 2021

The Nigerian Human Rights Community (NHRC) says indigenes of Yewa communities in Ogun state are being displaced by armed groups terrorising the area.

Iganna, Ibeku, Opebu, and Igbo-Oko are the Yewa communities NHRC listed that have been under the siege of the gunmen.

Adewale Adeoye, Kudu Abubakar and Chibuzor Ogbonaya, officials of the group, in a statement on Monday said no fewer than 60 people have either been killed, kidnapped or maimed in the area in the past few years.

The group said the crisis has led to the displacement of thousands of people in Yewa, and that if the armed cells in the area are allowed to grow, the situation in the communities may become like the north-east where millions have been displaced by Boko Haram insurgency.

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“What we see is that this armed group is establishing a stronghold in Ogun State using Yewa as its hub. The communities the terrorists occupy are largely border towns. They are also active in the forests located in borders in the area. The implication is that they are likely to have access to small arms. They are in the best position to receive weapons through the seized border from as far as Niger and the Maghreb region,” NHRC said.

“There are signals of greater conflict in the Yewa area. The occupation of some of the forests by armed groups remain a source of worry to locals. It poses danger not only to Yewa community but also to Ogun State, its environs and the entire South West. We expect the Federal Government to take drastic action to flush out the bandits. If nothing is done, the small group may develop into a major triangle of evil sooner than expected. This was exactly how the problem started in Borno State.

“We call on the Federal Government to address the grievous security situation in Yewa. As we speak, thousands of indigenous people in Yewa are in Benin Republic. They were displaced from their ancestral homeland. There is high probability that Yewa may emerge as a theater of more grievous cases of kidnapping and terrorist activities unless concrete efforts are taken to deal with the situation.”

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Although the Ogun state government had launched Amotekun operations in the area, the group said there are doubts about the capacity of the local outfit to deal with the emerging problem because the gunmen have sophisticated weapons.

The group said it has written a letter to the national assembly calling on lawmakers to impress on security operatives the need to enforce law and order in the area.

 

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