Sarkin Fulani of Oyo State, Alhaji Saliu Abdulkadir who was evicted from his Igangan palace four months ago, has denied media reports that he is behind the fresh attack on Igangan community.
The Sarkin Fulani, who also condemned the attacks, tasked security agencies to do their job in arresting the perpetrators.
Abdulkadir, who spoke in reaction to the allegation of Asigangan of Igangan, Oba Lasisi Adeoye, that he masterminded Sunday’s attacks where scores of farmers were killed, said it was wrong to have linked the attacks to him.
He said many herders also suffered casualties during the attacks and even said one Fulani man who was neither a cattle rearer nor trader and who has been living in Igangan since 60s was killed on Monday in reprisal attack on several Fulani settlements.
The Sarkin stressed that he has no hand in the pattacks and has no mercenary anywhere to attack the people on his behalf.
He said since the eviction from the community by armed youths led by Sunday Igboho, he has lost fortunes garnered over several decades.
He said, “They killed my people, destroyed my properties, I know nothing about the attacks. If I had the mercenaries, I would have defended myself when my palace was invaded by Sunday Igboho and his men.
“I have lost everything. I have been living from hands to mouth. I don’t have any mercenaries fighting for me. I leave everything in the hand of God.”
The evicted Sarkin Fulani who is currently in Ilorin, Kwara State, blamed the attack on failure of security agencies, saying if the security agencies had been proactive, such would not have occurred.
Abdulkadir insisted that the unrest in Ibarapa was worsened by ethnic profiling where only Fulani herders were tagged as criminals.
He said on many occasions, the Yoruba people were arrested for kidnapping and other criminalities in Ibarapa zone but their arrests never got prominence because they were not Fulani herders.
He said since his eviction in January, Fulani herders have been living in fear in the communities in Ibarapa including Aiyete, Tapa and Igangan, adding that he has advised those who are afraid to flee and refrain from taking the laws into their hands.
Sarkin Fulani called on the Federal Government to intervene in the happenings in Ibarapa zone, saying while the state government is doing its part to restore peace to the warring communities, it requires the support of the federal government to achieve lasting peace in the zone.