Alleged incessant Fulani herdsmen attack is said to have made residents of Mmiata community in Anambra West Local Government Area of Anambra State to flee their Ebenebe farm settlement and homes.
The residents said the development had compelled some of them to desert the community in droves.
Speaking to newsmen on Thursday in Onitsha, a youth leader from the area, Obinna Chigbata, said the attack began early in the year when the herdsmen insisted on grazing in their farmlamd despite series of peaceful meetings held between the community and the herders.
“I’m a youth leader and sponsor of all the peaceful meetings between my people and the Fulani herdsmen. The crisis escalated when some elders of the community tried to use civil means to stop the Fulani herdsmen from destroying our crops and farmlands.
“Unfortunately the peaceful settlement did not work as they attacked us one day and my father, late Chigbata Nwadiaogbu, was among those they killed in a meeting held to find a lasting solution to the problem,” he said.
Chigbata, however, regretted that security personnel were yet to intervene in the mele despite pre-informing them of destruction to farmlands, kidnapping, maiming, raping of our women and daughters.
“As I am talking to you now my life, as the financier/sponsor of the meeting for peaceful settlement of the crisis and others is in great danger because they are looking for us to kill. There was a time I was in a friend’s car and as we were driving we did not know that they laid ambush and they fired at us, killing my friend who was driving the car on the spot, may be they thought I was the one driving.
“Since we have become targets of the herdsmen for opposing grazing in our farmlands we have no alternative than to desert the community because the attack has even increased resulting in our people running away from their ancestral home.
“Some have even suggested we employ the services of Eastern Security Network (ESN) of the IPo
B, since the government security operatives are of no assistance to us as they have left us to die in the hands of the Fulani herdsmen with their bought over government security operatives,” he fumed.
When contacted, Police spokesperson, Tochukwu said the command was yet to receive the information.
“The Command has not received such complaint. I will find out and get back to you,” he said.