The Aare Onakakanfo of Yorubaland, Iba Gani Adams, has raised the alarm over alleged occupation of Oyo State by armed terrorists.
In a statement signed by his Special Assistant on Media, Mr. Kehinde Aderemi, Adams alleged that armed terrorists now occupy Kishi, located in North-West of Oyo State, as well as the vast old Oyo National Park. He said the recent development pose a great danger to the security of the entire South-West area.
Adams said that in the past few days, the armed groups had engaged in kidnapping and other illegal operations in the area, which are threatening the livelihood of innocent citizens and access to forest resources.
“I have received numerous reports from Kishi, North West of Oyo State. The reports range from ceaseless kidnapping, rape and threat to lives of Yoruba people in the Oke-Ogun area with Kishi as the present hub of terrorist attacks. It’s my responsibility to alert the public and also the relevant authorities,” Adams said.
He expressed worry that the region is gradually becoming a haven for bandits and terrorists masquerading as herdsmen, saying that the situation must be nipped in the bud to prevent the South West from toeing the ignoble part of the North-East and North-West of the country, where violence has taken a firm root.
He said what appears like the gathering of armed groups in the area would affect the stability of the entire South-West region if not quickly addressed.
According to him, “the occupation of the land by armed groups is an assault on Yoruba heritage and civilisation, saying that part of the forest host the sacred tabernacle of ancient Yoruba Alaafin whose graves were located in parts of the forest.